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Keyes Set to Run Fresh & Easy

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — Jim Keyes, the former chairman and chief executive officer of 7-Eleven, has been named to oversee Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market when the sale of 150 of its 200 stores is formally completed, sources said.

Keyes' appointment had been expected for several weeks.

Industry sources said Keyes and Tim Ashdown, Fresh & Easy's CEO, were meeting with Fresh & Easy employees at the company's stores and distribution center this week to discuss long-term plans for the company once Yucaipa Cos. completes the transaction in the next few weeks.

Read more: Yucaipa Takes Over Fresh & Easy

Officials at Yucaipa, the Los Angeles-based investment firm managed by Ron Burkle, could not be reached for comment about Keyes' appointment, and a Fresh & Easy spokesman declined to comment. However, he said most of the 50 stores Yucaipa will not acquire will be shut down by Friday. Those stores launched 25%-off sales last Wednesday and 50%-off sales Tuesday, he noted.


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The stores Yucaipa is buying are spread across California, Arizona and Nevada. Neither company has pinpointed which stores would be closed.

United Kingdom-based Tesco, which has operated Fresh & Easy since mid-2007, said last week it would loan Yucaipa about $125 million as part of the purchase agreement, with a total cash outlay of about $236 million for it to exit the U.S.

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