Shares in supermarket franchise operator Guyenne et Gascogne were suspended today (12 December) ahead of an impending announcement on its talks with retail giant Carrefour .

On Thursday (8 December) Carrefour and Guyenne et Gascogne , a key franchise partner, announced they were in talks about a “business combination”, but refused to comment further. Industry watchers say Carrefour is looking to acquire a partial or full stake in the smaller firm.

A spokeswoman from Guyenne at Gascogne said a statement will be released this afternoon but would not elaborate on the content. A spokesman from Carrefour did not comment on the announcement.

The two companies own a joint venture, Sogara, which operates 13 Carrefour hypermarkets in south-west France. Sogara also owns 8.2% of Centros Commerciales Carrefour, which operates Carrefour stores in Spain. Guyenne et Gascogne itself also operates six Carrefour hypermarkets and 27 Carrefour Market supermarkets in France.