The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) this week cleared the Koninklijke Ahold NV purchase of Bruno's Supermarket chain. Ahold is expected to pay approximately $500 million (€561 million) for the business.
According to FTC clearing terms Ahold must divest two of its BI-LO supermarkets in Georgia. In addition, Ahold is required to ensure that both stores remain viable prior to their sale and to sell the supermarkets and related assets within 10 business days after merging with Bruno's.
"The merger would reduce the number of major supermarket competitors in Milledgeville and Sandersville, which already have high concentration," said Joe Simons, Director of the FTC's Bureau of Competition. "The consent order approved by the Commission ensures that competition will be maintained in these two areas."
In September 2001, Ahold and Bruno's signed an agreement under which the former would purchase all of the latter's voting securities through the merger of New Bronco Acquisition Corp., an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Ahold, with Bruno's. Under the terms of the transaction, Bruno's will continue as the surviving corporation.
Bruno's Supermarkets currently operates 169 supermarkets in Alabama and 13 off-licenses. Ahold operates 1,300 U.S. food stores through its Ahold U.S.A., Inc. subsidiary under the trade names Giant, Stop & Shop, Tops, and BI-LO. In the southeastern United States, it owns and operates 294 BI-LO supermarkets, as well as a number of Golden Gallon convenience stores.