Mexican billionaire Ricardo Salinas is looking to take over the Brazilian store chain Lojas Renner, according to a report in Gazeta Mercantil.

Salinas is said to be seeking a minority stake in the department store firm initially via his Elektra subsidiary and then to go on to buy additional stakes.

Local consultant Economatica put the market value of Renner at BRL3.7bn (US$1.7bn), reported Gazeta Mercantil.

Renner's statutes specify that if an investor buys a stake of more than 20% in the firm it is under obligation to make a public offer to all shareholders.