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Bi-Lo divests 12 stores in Sweetbay deal

Bi-Lo Holdings has agreed to sell 12 supermarkets in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina to settle Federal Trade Commission charges related to its acquisition of the Sweetbay, Harveys and Reid’s chains from Delhaize America. In addition, Delhaize has agreed to retain two stores that were initially part of the deal.

The $265 million Delhaize acquisition, announced a year ago, is set to close in a series of eight separate transactions over a 10-week period, the FTC said. The proposed settlement is open for public comment through March 27, after which the FTC can finalize the deal.


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Proposed buyers for stores slated for divesture are Rowe’s IGA, Homeland Acquisition Corp., W. Lee Flowers & Co. and Food Giant.

Rowe’s IGA, based in Jacksonville, Fla., will acquire former Sweetbay stores in the Florida towns of Arcadia, Dunnellon, Lake Placid and Wauchula. HAC Inc., parent of the Homeland chain, will acquire two former Harveys stores in Statesboro, Ga., as well as a Vidalia, Ga., Harveys. The company will operate the Statesboro stores under the Food World banner and the Vidalia store under the Piggly Wiggly banner.

W. Lee Flowers & Co., an IGA retailer and distributor based in Lake City, S.C., will buy a Reid’s store in Batesburg, S.C., and Harveys stores in Waynesboro and Sylvania, Ga., for its Floco Foods subsidiary which will operate as KJ’s IGA. Finally, Houchens Industries’ Food Giant division is to acquire Harveys stores in Madison, Fla., and Bainbridge, Ga. Those stores are to reopen under the Food Giant banner, the FTC said.

Delhaize is to retain the Reid’s store in Hampton, S.C., and a Harveys location in Americus, Ga., which will be rebannered as Food Lion, Bi-Lo said.

Bi-Lo Holdings, based in Jacksonville, Fla., is the operator of the Bi-Lo and Winn-Dixie chains. According to the FTC complaint, Bi-Lo and Delhaize operated the only supermarkets in Madison, Fla. and Sylvania, Ga., and the only traditional supermarkets in eight of the geographic markets where divestitures are to occur.

Read more: Bi-Lo to acquire Sweetbay, Harveys

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