Retail tycoon Philip Green on Thursday announced he had decided to withdraw from the race for supermarket chain Safeway.

The billionaire owner of the Arcadia fashion empire said he would not bid for the country's fourth largest supermarket operator in a move which leaves the way clear for Morrisons to acquire the chain.

Green's bid vehicle Trackdean Investments, said in a statement: "Following advice from its professional advisers, Trackdean has now decided not to proceed with an offer for Safeway."