The Dutch supermarket giant Royal Ahold has announced today (3 October) that its foodservice unit Deli XL has acquired Mea-De Wilde De Loore, a Belgian market leader previously controlled by the UK catering Compass Group, part of Granada Compass.

The Belgian company supplies a huge range of products to institutional customers, and grosses annual sales of around €100m. The takeover is expected to boost sales at Deli XL to more than €900m.

In terms of sales, Ahold is the sixth largest supermarket chain in the world and Mea-De Wilde De Loore, based in Charleroi, represents “further attractive growth opportunities.” The deal is a demonstration of Ahold’s ever-increasing presence in the food services, a market worth €4.5bn that focuses on food eaten outside the home. Earlier this year, acquisition deals were completed on the companies US Foodservice and PYA/Monarch.

Ahold believes that the deal will also mean “rapid progress” in areas such as IT, product development and new services.

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