* RREEF in talks with Borletti, Qatari investors
* RREEF, Borletti bought Printemps from PPR in 2006
* Follows speculation of Galeries Lafayette interest
PARIS, Feb 20 RREEF, Deutsche Bank's
real estate investment unit, said on Wednesday it had started
exclusive talks to sell its stake in French department store
group Le Printemps to Italian partner Borletti Group and Qatari
Printemps is 70 percent owned by RREEF and 30 percent by the
Borletti Group, headed by Italian businessman Maurizio Borletti.
Speculation about Le Printemps' future ownership has risen
in recent months as RREEF was believed to be ready to sell,
while Borletti told Reuters in January he wanted to hold onto
RREEF and Borletti bought Printemps from French retail and
luxury giant PPR for 1.1 billion euros ($1.47 billion)
RREEF made the announcement of exclusive talks in a
statement. A source close to the matter told Reuters on
Wednesday a firm offer could be made "within a few weeks".
Speculation also rose in recent months in French media that
rival French department store operator Galeries Lafayette, which
tried to buy Printemps in 2006 but lost out to Borletti and
RREEF, had shown interest in the company again and mandated a
bank to prepare a bid.
Galeries Lafayette declined to comment again on Wednesday.
($1 = 0.7487 euros)
(Reporting by Pascale Denis and Dominique Vidalon; Editing by