Asda’s new owners the Issa brothers have offloaded a stake worth hundreds of millions of pounds in their EG Group petrol forecourts business.

Mohsin and Zuber Issa, the billionaire brothers from Blackburn who founded EG 19 years ago, have sold shares to an Abu Dhabi sovereign investor and two Canadian pension funds.  

The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority is topping up its existing stake in the group, which owns more than 6,000 petrol forecourts across the globe.

Canada’s Alberta Investment Management Corporation, which owns London City airport, and PSP Investments, the pension fund for Canadian public services, have also snapped up stakes in the group from the Issa brothers. 

According to Sky News, the share sales value EG Group at more than $20bn (£15.2bn). 

Details of the deals emerged as EG Group posted a near-doubling of profits during its third quarter. 

EBITDA during the three months to September 30 rocketed 90.5% to $478m (£363m), despite an 18% slump in like-for-like sales, driven by reduced sales of fuel and lower fuel retail prices. 

EG Group hailed profitability across all of its categories, however. Food service led the charge with a 74.8% spike in gross profit to $112m (£85m). 

Gross profit in its grocery and merchandise category grew 51.9% to $374m (£284m), while fuel service gross profit increased 44.2% to $515m  (£391m). 

Net debt swelled to $8.5bn (£6.5bn), compared with $7.1bn (£5.4bn) a year ago.  

Such figures have come under increasing scrutiny since the Issa brothers teamed up with TDR Capital to buy Asda from Walmart in a £6.8bn deal last month.

Some analysts have questioned whether the Issas have overstretched themselves financially to secure the deal and questions have also been raised about EG’s corporate governance. 

Yesterday, EG unveiled the appointment of former BP executive John Carey as a non-executive director and reaffirmed plans to further bolster its board.

Appointments being considered by the group include those of a new chair and audit committee chair.  

A spokesman for EG Group said: “We are delighted that our shareholders have been able to attract high-quality investors; that demonstrates confidence in them and their ability to generate stakeholder value.

“The investment will not result in any change to the ownership of EG Group; proceeds will not be for use by EG Group and will have no effect on our business. Given that the investment is a private matter for our shareholders, we are not able to comment further.”