Global retailer Ahold is to sell more than 600 Spanish stores and raise a further 2.5bn euros through a rights issue as part of a three-year recovery programme.

Ahold also posted a 12% drop in first half sales as the troubled group in the wake of its 1bn euros accounting scandal at the start of the year.

Ahold said it aimed to return to an “investment grade profile” by the end of 2005.