Thursday, January 5, 2012

Safeway to sell Genuardi’s supermarkets to Giant for $106M

by Peter Van Allen
"Giant Food Stores said Thursday it will pay $106 million for 16 Genuardi’s stores in the Philadelphia market, while three other Genuardi’s stores will be closed.

Eight other Genuardi’s locations are still for sale, parent Safeway Inc. said separately, and the Genuardi’s name is apparently on its way out.

The 16 stores being acquired by Giant will bear the Giant name. The deal is expected to close by midyear. With the 16 stores, Giant will have 56 locations in the Philadelphia market. Giant recently took over a Genuardi’s site in Feasterville, Pa.

The three Genuardi’s stores that Safeway will close are in Exton, Norristown and Royersford, Pa. Safeway said 145 jobs will be lost at those locations.

Four of the eight supermarkets that are for sale are in New Jersey. (See below for details.)

“We have made the decision to exit the greater Philadelphia market, including four stores in New Jersey, and focus our resources in those operating areas where we have a stronger presence,” said Steve Neibergall, president of Safeway’s (NYSE:SWY) eastern division. “We will be working with the purchasers to ease the transition for our store employees and making efforts to facilitate continued employment for as many of them as possible.”

About 1,800 Genuardi’s employees affected by the Giant acquisition will need to apply for positions at Giant.

All of the stores being acquired are in Pennsylvania. They are at:

• 2395 York Road, Jamison;
• 2890 S. Eagle Road, Newtown;
• 168 N. Flowers Mill Road, Langhorne;
• 4275 County Line Road, Chalfont;
• 1375 Boot Road, West Chester;
• 830 E. Baltimore Pike, East Marlborough;
• 550 E. Lancaster Ave., St. Davids;
• 950 Baltimore Pike, Springfield (Delaware Co.);
• 50 E. Wynnewood Road, Wynnewood;
• 1844 Bethlehem Pike, Flourtown;
• 737 Huntingdon Pike, Huntingdon Valley;
• 1121 Bethlehem Pike, Spring House;
• 310 S. Henderson Road, King of Prussia;
• 1925 Norristown Road, Maple Glen;
• 2350 Susquehanna Road, Roslyn;
• 467 Sumneytown Pike, North Wales.

Giant has 180 stores trading under the names Giant Food Stores and Martin’s Food Markets. Stores are in Pennsylvania,Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia.

A Safeway spokesman said it is still trying to sell locations in Doylestown, Conshohocken, Audubon, East Norriton in Pennsylvania. The New Jersey sites for sale are in Cherry Hill, Marlton, Egg Harbor Township and Barnegat Township.

There has been a shakeout in recent years in the region’s supermarket industry, which is seeing increased competition from giants like Walmart and Costco, and also relative newcomers like Wegman’s, Aldi and Bottom Dollar."

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