(Adds background, share move, GPA declines comment)
SAO PAULO, Jan 9 (Reuters) - Brazilian food retailer GPA SA has put its network of gas stations up for sale, one person with knowledge of the matter said on Thursday.
The source confirmed a report earlier on Thursday by Brazilian financial blog Brazil Journal, which said GPA may fetch up to 1 billion reais ($245 million) for the gas stations and that Banco Bradesco’s investment banking unit has the mandate.
GPA representatives declined to comment on the matter.
The move comes as the local subsidiary of France’s Casino Guichard Perrachon SA pushes forward a strategy to focus only on food retailing in Brazil.
In June, GPA ended a two-year effort to exit an investment made in the electronics and home appliances retailer Via Varejo SA by selling its 36% stake for 4.90 reais per share.
The transaction shifted the control of Casas Bahia and Pontofrio chains to Michel Klein and his family, which have been significant shareholders in Via Varejo since 2009. Klein’s father, Samuel Klein, founded Casas Bahia in the 1950s.
Brazil Journal also reported that GPA is mulling the sale of its drugstores.
The retailer currently owns 123 drugstores across Brazil and 72 gas stations with the brands Ipiranga, a unit of Ultrapar Participacoes SA and Raizen, a joint venture between Cosan SA and Royal Dutch Shell PLC.
GPA shares were trading 0.6% higher at 91.23 reais.
$1 = 4.0766 reais Reporting by Tatiana Bautzer and Gabriela Mello Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Bill Berkrot
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