Hungarian food stores operator BEE Halozat Elelmiszer-kereskedelmi Kft. is to merge with retail chain operator Coop Hungary Rt, according to a report carried by the Hungarian News Digest.

As a result of the merger, Coop Hungary will increase the number of its stores by 300 units, the majority of which concentrated in the capital Budapest.

Coop Hungary will boost its annual turnover by 6.0bn Hungarian forints (US$29.4m).

The majority of Coop Hungary's stores are concentrated in the countryside. The company closed 2004 with a turnover of 358bn forints.