Minipreço was launched by Grupo Pão de Açúcar in September 1979 in Lisbon, being the first in retailer in Portugal to import the discount format successfully implemented in countries like West Germany and the Netherlands.
In 1996, French retailer Auchan bought GPA's assets in Spain and Portugal, including Minipreço. Two years later, in 1998, the chain was sold to Spanish discount retailer DIA (coincidentally, then owned by competitor Promodès, which licensed the Continente brand to Sonae). Consequently, its existing DIA stores (which have been operating since 1990) were rebranded into Minipreço and the chain's private-label brand was discontinued in favor of the DIA brand.
In 1999, by the time DIA's parent company Promodès was in talks to merge with Groupe Carrefour, Minipreço introduced a refreshed logo that gave a bigger emphasis to its connection to the retailer.