NORRISTOWN, Pa. — Safeway may be close to selling at least some of its Genuardi's stores to rival Giant-Carlisle, a source told SN this week.
A spokesman for Pleasanton, Calif.-based Safeway, which owns Genuardi’s, declined to comment last week. A spokesman for Ahold USA-owned Giant told SN separately that the chain would not comment on market speculation.
However, a local source told SN that Safeway officials were conducting inventory and equipment evaluation at some Genuardi stores this week — often a signal of the final stages of a deal. The source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Giant-Carlisle could announce the acquisition of a group of Genuardi stores in as soon as 30 days. "This is going to happen," the source said.
Industry observers have been tracking a potential Genuardi's sale for years, and speculation increased earlier this month when a published report said Safeway was informally shopping the chain. The banner has struggled since Safeway acquired it from its family founders in 2001, and has closed several stores — including two that Giant later took over last year.
A source said it was unlikely Safeway could sell all of the Genuardi's sites, noting that strategic buyers would likely be turned off by heavy competition and onerous leases at some locations.