Colruyt Group increases its stake in Newpharma to 61%


On July 8 2021, Colruyt Group increased its stake in Newpharma from 26% to 61% by acquiring the shares of the online pharmacy specialist’s remaining minority shareholders. Colruyt Group and Korys, the investment company of the Colruyt family, now own 100% of the shares of Newpharma and remain committed to further support the development of Newpharma as a leading e-commerce player. With this investment, Colruyt Group aims at stimulating the consumer with a proactive approach to health, and at further developing its leadership in online retail.

Newpharma, a major player in the online pharmacy business

Newpharma is a leading Belgian online pharmacy, based in Liege and active in six countries. The webshop has a range of approximately 39,000 parapharmaceutical products and over-the-counter medicines at affordable prices. In a competitive European market, Newpharma managed to realise strong growth. This was partly due to increasing sales to new and existing customers, and an influx of new customers in foreign markets, including France, the Netherlands and Switzerland. In 2017, Colruyt Group acquired a 26% minority stake in Newpharma. In July 2021, the Group increased its stake to 61% through the acquisition of the shares held by the remaining minority shareholders of Newpharma. Both Colruyt Group and Korys remain committed to further support the development of Newpharma as a leading e-commerce player.

An increasing role with regard to health for Colruyt Group

The investment fits in Colruyt Group’s ambition to respond to the consumer’s needs in the different stages of his life cycle and with the group’s continuous investments in health. Colruyt Group wants to take responsibility for the ever-increasing role that retail plays in the pursuit of a healthier life. Initiatives such as SmartWithFood, the Colruyt Group Academy workshops, the expansion of the parapharmaceutical range in the Colruyt stores and the recent acquisition of the fitness chain JIMS are part of this commitment. Ultimately, the aim is to develop an ecosystem that gradually moves towards a broadly based approach to health.

Expanding leadership in e-commerce

Colruyt Group continues to invest and innovate in its online store concepts and digital applications, as well as in the quality of its products and services. The group’s ambition is to offer a response to the evolving needs of consumers with appropriate store concepts, including online concepts, with a focus on a multi-channel approach. In the context of this multi-channel approach with a view to consumer convenience, it has been possible to collect Newpharma orders from the Collishop pick-up point network since the beginning of 2021. The increase of the stake in Newpharma is a further step in expanding Colruyt Group’s leadership in e-commerce.

Newpharma has already taken various steps to support further sustainable growth and international development. For instance, the organisational structure has been improved and in the second half of 2020 the construction of a new distribution centre in Liège started, with the support of Colruyt Group. This new distribution centre will become operational in the coming months.

The transaction

Colruyt Group acquires all shares from the remaining minority shareholders of Newpharma (35%). Because of this transaction, the cash flow statement of Colruyt Group will include a cash outflow between EUR 72 million and EUR 82 million, mainly in financial year 2021/22. The parties have agreed not to disclose any additional details regarding the price or any other terms of the transaction. Arm’s length principles were applied for the valuation.

Newpharma will still be accounted for using the equity method. Colruyt Group expects this transaction to have no material impact on the 2021/22 net result.

The required measures were taken in view of the conflict of interest rules.

The public announcement in accordance with article 7:97, §4/1 of the Belgian Companies and Associations Code (CAC) regarding the increase of the stake in Newpharma is included on the next page.

Contact information

About Colruyt Group

Colruyt Group operates in the food and non-food distribution sector in Belgium, France and Luxembourg with more than 600 own stores and over 580 affiliated stores. In Belgium, this includes Colruyt, OKay, Bio-Planet, Cru, Dreamland, Dreambaby, Bike Republic and the affiliated Spar stores. In France, in addition to Colruyt stores, there are also affiliated Coccinelle, Coccimarket and Panier Sympa stores. The group is majority shareholder of The Fashion Society, which includes the fashion retail chains ZEB, PointCarré, The Fashion Store and ZEB For Stars. JIMS operates fitness clubs in Belgium and Luxembourg. Solucious and Culinoa deliver foodservice and retail products to professional customers in Belgium (hospitals, SMEs, hospitality sector, etc.). The other activities comprise the energy supply by DATS 24 in Belgium (fuels, natural gas and green energy), printing and document management solutions (Symeta Hybrid) and the production of green energy (Eoly). The group employs over 32.000 employees and recorded a EUR 9,9 billion revenue in 2020/21. Colruyt is listed on Euronext Brussels (COLR) under ISIN code BE0974256852.

About Korys

Korys is the investment company of the Colruyt family. Today, it has more than EUR 4.5 billion of assets under management. Besides holding a significant participation in Colruyt Group, a leading retail company in Belgium and France, it actively manages participations in privately held companies and in private equity funds. Korys has also set up proprietary funds to manage its portfolio of listed investments. Across its activities, Korys’ investment decisions are taken with a long-term perspective and on basis of strict economic (Profit), social (People) and ecological (Planet) criteria. Korys aims to create sustainable value in major ecosystems: Life Sciences, Energy Transition and Conscious Consumer. To do this, Korys can count on a motivated team of 30 professionals based in Belgium and Luxembourg.

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About Newpharma

Newpharma, the first online pharmacy in Belgium, was launched in 2008 and is the online extension of the physical pharmacy. As an online pharmacy with a European dimension and with 1,600,000 customers, Newpharma delivers in six countries via its original website and also has five other local websites for France, the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland and Austria. With more than 39,000 products and 1,700 brands, Newpharma also distinguishes itself by its specific optimised logistics and its capacity to deliver within 24 hours the majority of Belgian orders placed before noon. The online pharmacy Newpharma obtained the 31st place Belgian e-commerce top 100 was awarded four times at the BeCommerce Awards. The company is also part of the EAMSP (European Association for Mail Service Pharmacies). Newpharma, which historically financed its development through own financing, realised a revenue of more than
EUR 140 million in 2020.

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