French retail giant Casino has increased its stake in Brazilian retailer CBD to 35.3% after exercising a call option.

Casino, which previously held 32.9% of CBD shares, said it purchased 5.6m voting shares yesterday (24 July) for BRL22.9 (US$14.46) per share.

The total purchase price was EUR51.5m (US$80.98m).

"This acquisition results from the exercise by Casino of the call option granted by the Diniz family in June 2005 which was reaching maturity," Casino said in its statement.

The transaction does not affect the joint control of CBD exercised by Casino and the Diniz family, Casino said.

When contacted by just-food, Casino declined to comment on the strategic rationale behind the move, but did reaffirm the importance of international markets - and in particular Latin American markets - to the group's growth plans.