Britain’s Morrisons in talks with suitors to start auction process

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LONDON — British supermarket group Morrisons said on Wednesday it was in talks with its two U.S. private equity suitors and the Takeover Panel, which governs deals in the UK, regarding an auction procedure to settle its future ownership.

Last month Morrisons agreed a 7 billion pound ($9.6 billion)offer from Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R). However, a rival consortium led by Softbank-owned Fortress Investment Group could still trump CD&R’s bid. ($1 = 0.7266 pounds) (Reporting by James Davey; editing by Michael Holden)