MONTVALE, N.J. — A&P said Thursday that it would look to sell 25 SuperFresh stores in Maryland; Washington, D.C.; and Delaware as part of its turnaround plan under Chapter 11. The company said it hoped to complete the sales within the next two months, pending court approvals.
"As part of our ongoing review of our store footprint, we determined that these 25 SuperFresh locations are outside A&P's core market," Sam Martin, chief executive officer of A&P, said in a statement. "While the decision to put these non-core stores up for sale will unfortunately impact some of our customers, partners, communities and associates, this is a necessary step in our efforts to restore the company to long-term financial health."
The stores for sale include 22 in Maryland — primarily in the Baltimore market — two in Delaware and one in Washington, D.C. A&P said SuperFresh stores on the Maryland and Delaware shores would stay with the company, as would its SuperFresh stores in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The stores up for sale are separate from the eight SuperFresh stores among the 32 store closures the company announced in February.
SuperFresh in Maryland had struggled for some time amid declining market shares and an influx of new competitors, sources said. Burt P. Flickinger III, managing partner of Strategic Resource Group, New York, said the chain could be of interest to discounters such as Wakerfern’s PriceRite banner or Delhaize’s Bottom Dollar chain, both of which have looked in the area for expansion opportunities. A spokesman for Delhaize said the company did not comment on acquisition speculation. Wakefern was not immediately available for comment.