All Albertsons stores will again be under the same ownership. That’s one effect of a $3.3 billion deal announced Thursday between private investment company Cerberus Capital Management and grocery chain Supervalu.
Albertsons, the grocery chain founded in Boise in the 1930s, put itself up for sale nearly a decade ago. The company was split up. A group of investors formed Albertson’s LLC and bought the company’s underperforming stores. Minnesota-based Supervalu purchased the rest.
Since then, Albertson’s Boise-based workforce has shrunk from between 5,000 and 6,000 to under 4,000. But to many in the city, it’s still a hometown company. And this deal means all of its stores will be together again.
Christine Wilcox, the communications director for Albertson’s LLC, says the value of reuniting the stores under one owner isn’t just symbolic. “Albertson’s LLC has said all along that we’re interested in making the right acquisitions,” she says. “We know these stores and these businesses very well, and we’re just excited to have the opportunity to drive growth in these market areas again.”
Albertson’s LLC is owned by Cerberus Capital Management, the private company that led the deal. In addition to the Albertsons stores, Cerberus acquired Supervalu’s Acme, Jewel-Osco, Shaw’s and Star Market chains.
Wilcox says not only will today’s sale create a unified brand. Albertsons could also benefit by being privately owned rather than publicly traded. But there was one key question Wilcox did not answer: what this deal might mean for Albertsons’ jobs. Albertson’s LLC closed most of the stores it took on in 2006.