Supermarket chain operator Daiei Inc. announced Tuesday it will sell its full stake in subsidiary department store Printemps Ginza SA to reduce its own debt.

A company to be established by Printemps Ginza executives, employees and a fund under the Fuji Bank group plans to take over the shares for 7 billion yen late next month, Daiei said in a news release.

Daiei established Printemps Ginza in 1983 in a tieup with the famed French department store Printemps and opened the outlet the following year in Tokyo’s Ginza shopping district.

Daiei said the stock transfer will not affect its fiscal 2001 earnings projections released in April.

Daiei holds 99.06 percent of Printemps Ginza’s outstanding shares. The remainder is owned by the store’s executives and an employee group.

The store has been doing well and plans to become a publicly traded company in the 2004 business year. Daiei was considering selling the stock after the planned public listing, company sources said earlier.

But with Printemps Ginza consolidating its management and Daiei’s need to reduce its interest-bearing debt of about 2.56 trillion yen, Daiei now wants to sell before the listing, they said.

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