Polish businessman Mariusz Switalski, co-founder of the Eurocash, Biedronka and Zabka retail chains, as well as Czerwona Torebka, aims to acquire grocer Mercator.

A fund associated with Switalski has started negotiations with Mercator and signed a confidentiality agreement.

There has been no official comment from Switalski or his team.

However, sources say he will compete for control of Mercator with private equity funds such as Bain Capital, CVC Capital Partners or Mid Europa, which owns Zabka.