BRAZIL: Private equity firm Actis has invested £37m in Companhia Sulamericana de Distribuição, the operator of Brazilian supermarket chains São Francisco and Cidade Canção - its first investment in Brazil. CSD is one of three major super­market retailers in Paraná state and is among the top 25 supermarket operators in Brazil. With the new capital, CSD plans to open new stores in Paraná and Mato Grosso do Sul and to double its store footprint over the next three to five years.

AUSTRALIA: Woolworths is planning to raise more than £535m through the sale and leaseback of its property portfolio. The supermarket chain is selling more than 30 shopping centres of varying sizes and will lease them back on a long-term basis. It has appointed investment bank Moelis & Company and commercial property firm CB Richard Ellis to assist with the transaction. Woolworths has reported an 8% increase in pre-tax profits to £1.7bn for the year to 27 June.

NETHERLANDS: Convenience Foods Europe, a subsidiary of buyout firm Parcom Capital, has acquired Greencore Group's Dutch-based convenience foods operation Greencore Continental, which supplies sandwiches, chilled pizzas and chilled sauces to customers in Continental Europe.

The company, which operates from facilities in Liessel and Alphen in The Netherlands, reported turnover of £28m in the year to 25 September 2009 and has net assets of £10.6m. Greencore Group had announced its intention to sell the business in July.

VENEZUELA: The Venezuelan government has agreed to pay Cativen, the local division of French retailer Casino, £450m for an 80% stake in its hyper­markets and supermarkets. President Hugo Chavez nationalised the company's Exito hypermarkets and Cada brand supermarkets earlier this year after accusing them of illegally raising prices following a devaluation of the bolivar. They were converted into a state-run chain known as Abastos Bicentenarios. The government paid Cativen 20% of the total this week.

CHINA: Spar China has opened its first hypermarket in Beijing. The 50,000 sq ft store, which is located in the capital's Chaoyang district, had more than 45,000 customers on its first day of trading. It is the retailer's 100th store in the country, having opened its first five years ago in Weihai, Shandong province. It now has a presence in nine different provinces and plans to open a further three stores in Beijing before the end of the year.

"The unique way Spar operates with local partners, sharing expertise and knowledge and sourcing products not only within China but internationally, has contributed to the rapid pace of growth and success in the Chinese market," said Spar International managing director, Dr Gordon Campbell.

US: Drugstore chain Rite Aid is adding groceries to 10 stores after signing a licensing agreement with Supervalu hard discounter chain Save-A-Lot.