California grocer Raley’s plans to acquire Arizona grocer Bashas’, creating a supermarket company with more than 200 stores in four Western states stretching from Northern California to New Mexico.
Financial terms of the agreement, announced late Friday, weren’t disclosed. Edward “Trey” Basha, president and CEO of Bashas’, and Keith Knopf, president and CEO of Raley’s Holding Co., informed Bashas’ employees of the merger in a joint video presentation on Oct. 1.
Under the deal, Bashas’ will operate as a Raley’s subsidiary company and maintain its Chandler, Ariz., corporate headquarters as well as its distribution center in Arizona and store banners. Bashas’ said no changes to store leadership, employee roles, compensation or benefits are planned.
"While the Basha family will no longer have ownership roles, we look forward to seeing the business thrive for generations to come." — Edward "Trey" Basha, Bashas' Family of Stores (Photo courtesy of Bashas')
Overall, the Bashas’ Family of Stores operates more than 100 grocery stores under the Bashas’, Bashas’ Diné, Food City, AJ’s Fine Foods and Eddie’s Country Store banners. Two of the retailer’s stores are in New Mexico and the rest are in Arizona. The grocer also serves Tribal Nation Partners including the Navajo Nation, White Mountain Apache, San Carlos Apache and Tohono O’odham.
The agreement marks “the beginning of Bashas’ next, exciting chapter,” according to Basha, the son of former CEO Edward Basha Jr. and grandson of co-founder Edward Basha Sr., who opened the company’s first store in 1932 with brother Ike.
“In Raley’s, we will have a partner who will ensure we continue delivering exceptional customer and member experiences at a time when regional grocery competition has never been tougher, while staying true to the values that have shaped our history over 90 years,” Basha said in a statement. “Customers, members and local Arizona communities will also benefit from the seamless alignment of culture and values that we share with Raley’s. While the Basha family will no longer have ownership roles, we look forward to seeing the business thrive for generations to come.”
"The Bashas’ company is strong and well-positioned in the market." — Keith Knopf, Raley's
The transaction is expected to close by the end of this year, the companies said. West Sacramento, Calif.-based Raley’s operates 124 supermarkets in northern California and Nevada under the Raley’s, Bel Air, Nob Hill Foods and Raley’s O-N-E Market banners. Raley’s Holding Co. also includes Apium Logistics, a food delivery and logistics provider, and a digital subscription technology company.
“Today marks an important milestone in the ongoing legacy of two great companies,” Knopf stated Friday in announcing the acquisition. “We are humbled to assume stewardship of the Bashas’ organization. Raley’s history of respecting the legacy of the brands we acquire assures continuity for Bashas’ customers, employees and business partners. And, on behalf of our 13,000 employees, I want to welcome Bashas’ team members to our organization. The Bashas’ company is strong and well-positioned in the market. We are confident that with our robust digital capabilities and combined purchasing power, we can further enhance the overall customer experience.”
For the transaction, The Food Partners served as strategic and financial adviser and Snell & Wilmer as legal counsel to Raley’s. Citi served as a strategic and financial adviser and Burch & Cracchiolo P.A. as lead legal counsel for Bashas’.
“This agreement keeps our well-established brands, protects jobs, makes the company more competitive, allows it to accelerate investments in technology and ensures the Bashas’ Family of Stores can continue to serve customers across Arizona, New Mexico and our Tribal Nation partners for years to come,” Basha said. “My family and I are grateful for our amazing members and customers and the loyal communities that made Bashas’ into what it is today. Joining the Raley’s organization is the right decision to keep the Bashas’ stores thriving and serving our communities.”