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News / Business / Clark County Business

9 Safeways in Clark County will be sold as part of Kroger-Albertsons merger plan; buyer says no stores will close

East Vancouver QFC and the Battle Ground Albertsons are also part of the deal

By Sarah Wolf, Columbian staff writer
Published: July 9, 2024, 2:40pm
4 Photos
The Main Street Safeway in west Vancouver. Nine Clark County Safeways are set to be sold, according to Kroger’s divestiture list released as part of its merger with Albertsons.
The Main Street Safeway in west Vancouver. Nine Clark County Safeways are set to be sold, according to Kroger’s divestiture list released as part of its merger with Albertsons. (Taylor Balkom/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Eleven Clark County grocery stores will be sold as part of the planned merger between grocery giants Kroger and Albertsons, the companies disclosed Tuesday.

The stores are expected to be sold to C&S Wholesale Grocers, parent company of Grand Union grocery stores and the Piggly Wiggly franchise.

“C&S, an industry leader in wholesale grocery supply and one of the largest privately held companies in the United States, brings 104 years of food industry experience and a track record as a successful grocery retailer,” according to a statement on the merger website.

C&S also said that no stores will close as a result of the merger and that all frontline associates will remain employed. All existing collective bargaining agreements will continue.

The sale to C&S will not go through until Kroger and Albertsons close on their merger, which hasn’t been officially approved. Until then, the Safeway, QFC and Albertsons stores will continue to operate as they are, according to a Kroger spokeswoman.

The divestiture list includes nine Safeway stores, a QFC and an Albertsons in Clark County:

  • QFC: 3505 S.E. 192nd Ave., Vancouver
  • Safeway: 6701 E. Mill Plain Blvd., Vancouver
  • Safeway: 6711 N.E. 63rd St., Vancouver
  • Safeway: 408 N.E. 81st St., Vancouver
  • Safeway: 2615 N.E. 112th Ave., Vancouver
  • Safeway: 6700 N.E. 162nd Ave., Suite 500, Vancouver
  • Safeway: 13023 N.E. Highway 99, Suite 1, Vancouver
  • Safeway: 3707 N. Main St., Vancouver
  • Safeway: 14300 N.E. 20th Ave., Vancouver
  • Albertsons: 2108 W. Main St., Battle Ground
  • Safeway: 904 W. Main St., Battle Ground

The Camas and Washougal Safeway stores and the location on east Mill Plain Boulevard are not part of the divestiture. The east Mill Plain Safeway property was sold last year to a holding company connected to Las Vegas-based Swickard Auto Group.

Kroger and Albertsons announced in October 2022 that their boards unanimously approved a merger, allowing Kroger to acquire all of Albertsons’ shares for $24.6 billion and assume $4.7 billion of Albertsons’ debt.

A sale of this magnitude has to gain approval from the federal government. Part of that process included the companies being required to sell hundreds of locations where there is too much market overlap, a process known as divestiture.

The merger, however, has been fraught with criticism. Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s office filed an antitrust lawsuit to block it in January.

Ferguson alleged the merger violates the state’s antitrust law, eliminating Kroger’s closest competitor and causing consumers to pay more. The trial is set for September.

The Federal Trade Commission filed a similar lawsuit, as have several other states, earlier this year.

“Today’s announcement changes nothing,” a coalition of United Food & Commercial Workers local unions said in a statement Tuesday. “The merger is not a done deal, far from it.”

Kroger and Albertsons own over half of the state’s supermarkets, according to the attorney general’s office. They are two of the largest grocery retailers in Washington.

Together, they own 337 stores statewide, 124 of which are expected to be divested. Kroger has eight Fred Meyer and QFC stores in Clark County, and Albertsons operates 13 Albertsons and Safeway stores locally.