Starbucks quits S. Korea tie-up valued at $2 bln+

Starbucks is quitting its joint venture in South Korea - the firm's fifth-largest market.

It's selling a part of its stake to local partner E-Mart.

The rest is being snapped up by Singapore's sovereign wealth fund, GIC.

Retailer E-Mart will operate the stores, and buy an additional 17.5% stake for $411 million.

That suggests a $2.35 billion value for the whole business.

Starbucks said the deal would be completed in 90 days.

Its South Korean office wouldn't comment on why the firm was selling up.

With more than 1,500 stores across 78 cities, Starbucks Coffee Korea saw operating profit surge nearly three quarters over the January to March quarter.

E-Mart and parent firm Shinsegae have leveraged the disruption of the past year to buy up some businesses.

Last month E-Mart said it was buying most of EBay's operations in South Korea for $3 billion.

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