Retail

Jewel-Osco Scoops Up Indiana Strack & Van Til Stores

Nineteen Indiana Strack & Van Til stores are soon to become Jewel Food Stores.

Jewel-Osco, a wholly owned subsidiary of Albertsons Companies and the largest grocery store chain in Chicago, announced Monday (May 15) that it had entered into an asset purchase agreement with owner Central Grocers after the latter filed for bankruptcy protection earlier in May.

Until now, only four of Jewel-Osco’s 186 stores were located in Indiana, with the vast majority located in Illinois and Iowa. This acquisition will expand the company’s footprint deeper into Indiana.

Jewel-Osco said it has no plans to close any of the acquired stores, and the company stated that it intends to offer employment to all current Strack & Van Til store employees as part of the transaction.

“We are excited to have the opportunity to grow the Jewel-Osco brand in the Midwest and welcome the Strack & Van Til team at those 19 stores to our Jewel-Osco family,” said Doug Cygan, Jewel-Osco division president.

Media reports are pegging the sale at $100 million. Jewel-Osco will serve as the “stalking-horse bidder” in the court-supervised sale process when Strack & Van Til goes to auction on June 2.

Central Grocers Inc. filed for bankruptcy protection in early May after four of its food suppliers banded together to demand the company pay its bills, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Central Grocers supplies Midwestern supermarkets Tony’s Finer Foods and Sunset Foods. Serving a grand total of 500 supermarkets, the company is the seventh largest grocery store cooperative in the U.S., according to a Reuters report.

Next, Central Grocers is weighing the options to sell its million-square-foot distribution center in Joliet, Ill.; three Strack & Van Til Ultra stores that were not included in the transaction with Jewel-Osco; and six Raceway real estate assets as the company’s wholesale distribution operations draw to a close.

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