FLEMING SALE TO C&S SET TO CLOSE

DALLAS -- Fleming here said late last week it was scheduled to close by Aug. 23 on the $400 million sale of its wholesale grocery distribution business to C&S Wholesale Grocers, Brattleboro, Vt.A Fleming spokesman told SN the company is still "exploring strategic alternatives" for Core-Mark, the San Francisco-based convenience-store distributor it acquired last year. Possibilities include a sale of

DALLAS -- Fleming here said late last week it was scheduled to close by Aug. 23 on the $400 million sale of its wholesale grocery distribution business to C&S Wholesale Grocers, Brattleboro, Vt.

A Fleming spokesman told SN the company is still "exploring strategic alternatives" for Core-Mark, the San Francisco-based convenience-store distributor it acquired last year. Possibilities include a sale of Core-Mark or management of the company by a restructured Fleming, he said.

The company's convenience-distribution business has "been able to restore and maintain service levels at a much higher level" than its wholesale grocery business," he noted. "They have not been impacted the same way the grocery business was" by the Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization Fleming filed for in April.

Earlier this month, Fleming received approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Wilmington, Del., to move forward with the sale of its grocery distribution to C&S. The court decision was delayed for several days to give Fleming and C&S time to resolve the issue of $181 million in cure claims filed by Fleming's retail customers and other contractual partners. In the settlement the court finally approved, Fleming agreed to pay $22 million in cure claims and $8 million in assorted other claims, according Geoffrey Richards, its attorney.

Richards said C&S agreed to pay the rest of the reparations for the contracts it wants to keep. A C&S spokesman was not available for comment.