PLEASANTON, Calif. — Once its lifestyle remodelings are 90% completed, Safeway is likely to begin making acquisitions, Steve Burd, chairman, president and chief executive officer, told shareholders here yesterday at the company's annual meeting. "Although we haven't done anything of scale lately, we see ourselves getting back to acquisitions after the lifestyle stores are complete," he said. The conversion of stores to the lifestyle format is about 50% completed, he said, with the number expected to reach 60% by the end of this year and 90% by the end of 2009. Safeway is also "entertaining the possibility" of trying different formats "that would represent a significant growth vehicle," Burd said. "And occasionally we look at businesses related to our primary business." Burd said returns on lifestyle remodels are running at 37%. Safeway boosted its quarterly dividend by 20% — to 6.9 cents per share from 5.75 cents, effective July 19 to shareholders of record June 29. Shareholders approved Safeway proposals to change the company's equity and incentive award plan to provide additional incentives for executives and key employees by a yes vote of 90% and to amend its capital performance bonus plan by setting pre-established performance goals and increasing the maximum amounts payable to participants by a 98% vote. All nine directors whose terms were up, including Burd, were reelected.
Read More of Today's Headlines