Following weeks of delays and hiccups, struggling Dutch supermarket group Laurus, French retailer Casino and three large Dutch banks have finally agreed a €950m (US$901m) credit facility for Laurus, ahead of a €400m rescue plan.

The lifeline deal with banks ABN AMRO , ING and Rabobank, also contains an extra €250m facility for Laurus' struggling stores in Spain and Belgium, which will be responsible for repayment and interest.

"This is the final agreement," a Laurus spokeswoman said. Laurus is planning to sell shares at € 0.90 each to Casino, the banks and the public after mounting losses from a failed restructuring pushed the Dutch company into the red.

Casino will acquire a 38.6% stake in Laurus, with an option to take full control of Laurus by the end of 2008. The share sale plan, which has taken weeks to resolve, depended on an agreement on Laurus's bank debt which took longer than expected to reach.

Shareholders are expected to approve the deal in a meeting on 28 June.