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Friday, October 29, 2010 

Lazy Acres parent company, Supervalue

sells the Bristol Farms chain, which includes Lazy Acres.

Supermarket operator Supervalu Inc. said Friday it has sold its Bristol Farms chain to that division's management team in partnership with investment firm Endeavour Capital.

Bristol Farms, a southern California based grocery retailer formed in 1982, now operates 13 Bristol Farms stores and one Lazy Acres store. The locations will continue to operate under their current names with existing local management and employee base. - BusinessWeek

....In 2004, Albertsons bought the chain for an undisclosed amount. At the time, Albertsons had been waging an increasingly tough battle not only with other conventional grocery chains but also with mass merchandisers such as Wal-Mart and Costco that were becoming a force in groceries using cut-rate prices.

The goal had been to give Albertsons "the ability to operate smaller-format stores in wealthier neighborhoods and differentiate themselves not based on price but on quality and service," said Lloyd Greif, president of Greif & Co., a Los Angeles investment bank that put together both the 2004 deal and the most recent sale.

The corporate marriage "looked good on paper," Greif said, but was less so in practice. Burdened with aging stores and growing competition, Albertsons was sold in 2006 and broken into three pieces as part of an $11.1-billion deal plus the assumption of $6.3 billion in debt. Supervalu acquired more than 1,100 stores, including the 270 Albertsons and Bristol Farms markets in Southern California.

Bristol Farms "became a corporate orphan," Greif said. "It didn't fit in with the strategy to compete for customers on price." - Latte Times


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