Newswatch

The board of directors of Casey's General Stores here last week urged shareholders in the convenience chain not to respond to a tender offer from Canadian counterpart Alimentation Couche-Tard. Couche-Tard last week said it commenced an offer to buy the outstanding shares of Casey's for $36 a share the same price Casey's board had already rejected when

COUCHE-TARD BEGINS CASEY'S OFFER

ANKENY, Iowa — The board of directors of Casey's General Stores here last week urged shareholders in the convenience chain not to respond to a tender offer from Canadian counterpart Alimentation Couche-Tard. Couche-Tard last week said it commenced an offer to buy the outstanding shares of Casey's for $36 a share — the same price Casey's board had already rejected when Couche-Tard made an initial offer this spring. Couche-Tard also announced its intention to nominate a slate of candidates for election to Casey's board. Casey's in a statement said it would review the offer and would make a recommendation to shareholders within 10 days.

ALDI PLANS TO OPEN IN NYC IN 2011

BATAVIA, Ill. — Aldi's long-anticipated arrival in New York City will come early next year, the retailer said last week. The discounter has agreed to locate in the Rego Park II development in Queens, with the store scheduled to open sometime in early 2011. Aldi had hoped to have arrived in New York as soon as last year, but plans for its initial store fell through, company officials said. The company is now looking to hire staff for the Queens store.

WHOLE FOODS FETES 30TH ANNIVERSARY

AUSTIN, Texas — Whole Foods Market is kicking off its 30th birthday celebration with an essay contest that will send 30 winners to a VIP culinary weekend here. Contest participants are encouraged to submit stories of how much they love Whole Foods. Winners will be flown to Austin Sept. 17-19 as part of Whole Foods' birthday celebration. The retailer was founded here in September 1980 when SaferWay Natural Foods and Clarksville Natural Grocery merged. Details are available at www.wholefoodsmarket.com/birthday [3].

SUNFLOWER NAMED ‘HOTTEST RETAILER’

DENVER — Sunflower Markets here was one of five retailers named to the annual list of “Hot Retailers” by the trade group International Council of Shopping Centers. The ICSC announced the list at its annual convention in Las Vegas. Winners were chosen based on the results of an annual survey sent to over 55,000 ICSC members who were asked to name the concepts they considered to be the “most original and innovative” in the industry. Other retailers receiving “Hot Retailers” recognition included gift boutique Edible Arrangements, apparel retailers Flip Flop Shops and Charming Charlie, salon Too Hotties and electronic shop Best Buy Express.

CALIF. GROCERS PRAISE NEW BAG BILL

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Grocers Association lauded the announcement of state legislation — Assembly Bill 1998 — that would ban the free distribution of single-use carryout bags and require the sale of single-use recycled-paper carryout bags to customers at the point of sale. The bill would also require affected stores to provide reusable bags for sale or free distribution and would preempt local ordinances that regulate bags at those retailers subject to the state law. Overall, the bill would create a statewide standard for single-use carryout bags at supermarkets, chain pharmacies and other large grocery retailers beginning Jan. 1, 2012, and at convenience stores, neighborhood markets and liquor stores beginning July 1, 2013.