Walmart Stores (WMT) may change its plans to buy South African retailer Massmart, choosing instead to take a majority stake in the company.

This would allow Massmart to maintain its listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Walmart is now weighing up the option of buying a stake in Massmart greater than 50% of the company. The price would remain 148 rand ($21.0436) a share.

The two companies have been in talks and Walmart has made a non-binding proposal to buy the company for 32 billion rand ($4.53 billion). Walmart has not tabled a formal offer.

Taking a stake in Massmart would match Walmart's strategy in Mexico, where it owns 68% of Walmart de Mexico, Latin America's largest retailer.

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