Retail giant Kroger to buy Albertsons for $25 billion

(Reuters) – The American group Kroger announced on Friday the acquisition of Albertsons Companies for 24.6 billion dollars (25.3 billion euros), in order to create a retail giant able to compete with the number an American in the sector, Walmart.

Under the terms of the offer, Albertsons shareholders will receive $34.10 for each security tendered, representing a premium of approximately 33% over Wednesday’s closing price, a day before Bloomberg reported. does not mention discussions between the two groups.

This merger between the number one and number two independent supermarkets in the United States will bring together more than 2,200 Albertsons stores and more than 2,700 Kroger stores, including brands such as Ralphs and Fred Meyer.

However, the merger risks attracting the attention of the authorities, with some analysts believing that it could hamper competition and lead to higher prices for consumers.

To allay those concerns, the two companies said they plan to divest some stores, among other things. The new entity should have between 100 and 375 establishments.

“Albertsons brings a complementary footprint and operates in several areas of the country where there are very few or no Kroger stores,” said Kroger chief executive Rodney McMullen. “This merger (…) accelerates our positioning as a more compelling alternative to larger, non-union competitors.”

Following completion of the transaction, which is expected to close in early 2024, Rodney McMullen will remain at the helm of the new company.

The title Kroger lost 1.46% in the first exchanges on Wall Street and Albertsons 5.61%. They had taken 1.15% and 11.5% respectively on Thursday in reaction to information from Bloomberg.

(Report Aishwarya Venugopal and Deborah Sophia in Bangalore, French version Laetitia Volga, edited by Sophie Louet)

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