Walmart 'seriously considering' IPO for United Kingdom unit Asda

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The likelihood of a bleak future will not make Asda attractive to potential stock market investors.

Walmart, the world's biggest retailer, said it is considering a stock market listing for its British supermarket arm Asda, whose attempt to combine with rival Sainsbury's was blocked by the United Kingdom regulator last month.

The Leeds-based supermarket chain Asda was purchased by Walmart back in July 1999 for 6.7 billion pounds.

Judith McKenna, Walmart International CEO, told Asda staff at its mid-year meeting Tuesday in England, that Walmart does not have "a one size fits all approach to operating its international markets", reported CNBC.

Trade union GMB called for assurances for staff and said it had asked for an urgent meeting with Walmart bosses.

Walmart is "seriously considering" a stock market flotation for Asda that is likely to value the business at more than £7bn after the failure of a planned merger between its British supermarket group and rival Sainsbury's.

Judith McKenna, Walmart's worldwide chief executive, said Walmart was "seriously considering a path to an IPO - a public listing".

Gary Carter, GMB national officer, said: "GMB's tens of thousands of Asda members have had enough uncertainty - they need to know that their futures are safe and secure". Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.

"Walmart does not have a one-size-fits-all approach to operating its worldwide markets, but a consistent focus on strong local businesses powered by Walmart", McKenna told employees.

Asda CEO Roger Burnley told staff to "forget the language of Plan A and Plan B", adding that Asda's one clear strategy "requires momentum in the short term, growth in the medium-term and sustainability in the long term".

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