CC & Cameron McKenna create revolutionary deal

The securitisation is a twist on traditional sale and leaseback deals carried out by the likes of House of Fraser or Tesco. Sainsbury's keeps control of the 16 properties and cuts its tax bill.

Other retailers are likely to follow suit as commercial pressures force them to make the most of their fixed assets.

CMS Cameron McKenna partner Nick Brown says: "Not only does the securitisation unlock some of the value from the company's property portfolio, it will also bring greater certainty to the organisation's financial planning.