Mohsin and Zuber Issa Religion, Who Bought Asda from Walmart

Muslim Family, two billionaire Blackburn brothers won the battle to purchase Asda from US Walmart in a transaction worth £ 6.8bn in the supermarket chain.

Mohsin and Zuber Issa
Mohsin and Zuber Issa

Asda purchased by Issa brothers in £6.8bn

Muslim Family, two billionaire Blackburn brothers won the battle to purchase Asda from US Walmart in a transaction worth £ 6.8bn in the supermarket chain.

A consortium of Zuber and Mohsin Issa and TDR Capital will take a majority stake in Asda.

The grocer will return to majority UK ownership for the first time in two decades.

The Issa brothers own EG Company of over 5,200 gas stations throughout the UK and Europe.

A spokesman for the brothers Issa and TDR Capital declined to comment about how they finance the contract. Walmart said Asda will spend £1bn in the store over the next three years under new owners.

Asda 's auction process lasted several months. Walmart agreed to sell a majority interest in Asda after a failed £7.3bn merger with Sainsbury's that was blocked on antitrust grounds.

Walmart purchased Asda for £6.7bn in 1999, retaining a minority interest in the supermarket chain.

Announcing the deal, Walmart said Asda would retain its headquarters in Leeds and its chief executive, Roger Burnley, would stay in place.

Asda has a partnership with the Issa brothers through their oil forecourt company.

Recently, the supermarket announced its expansion into convenience stores and will initially trial "Asda On the Go" at three Midlands fuel station forecourts of EG Group.

Mohsin and Zuber Issa said they wanted to help Asda's long-term growth management.

"We believe our experience with EG Group, including our expertise on convenience and brand partnerships and our fruitful relationship with TDR Capital, will help drive and introduce this growth strategy," they said.

Who's Issa brothers?

According to Brian Madderson, chairman of the Petrol Retailers Association (PRA), of which their EG Group is a member, the growth rate of their gas station company marks the Issa brothers out as "remarkable entrepreneurs."

The rapid expansion came as major oil firms sold off or closed their oil outlets to focus on production and refining.

Industry insiders describe the brothers as gentle, humble. Several years ago, at one industry award ceremony, the brothers were present but said to be too shy to demand their award on stage.

People who know them say part of their success is being curious about rivals and eager to learn and pick up new ideas.

Sunday Times rates its fortune at £3.56bn.

Initially called Euro Garages, in 2001 the Issa brothers formed EG, extending it from a single site in Bury, Greater Manchester.

TDR Capital now owns half the company, with Zuber Issa 25% and Mohsin Issa the remaining 25%.

Walmart said he planned to record a loss of $2.5bn (£1.9bn) for his next financial year, "reflecting the lack of net profits associated with Asda."

It added that "the use of cash proceeds" from the sale "will be decided later."

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