Personnel Updates:

AG Supermarket Holdings, parent of the Kings and Balducci’s chains, said that Matt Cozza has been named VP of Real Estate and Business Development.

Ahold USA said it has named Juan De Paoli Senior VP of Brand Management and Own Brands.

Kroger Co.  said it had established new divisions in Nashville, Tenn., and Louisville, Ky., and unveiled a slate of executive appointments around the new structure. Rick Going has been named President of Kroger’s new Nashville division and Calvin Kaufman has been named President of the new Louisville division. In addition, Kroger appointed Jayne Homco President of its Michigan division, and Erin Sharp Group VP of Kroger Manufacturing.

Nash Finch Co. said it has promoted Tom Swanson to Senior VP of Retail Operations.

Golub/Price Chopper Supermarkets said it has named Karlin Bohnert as Senior VP of Information Systems/CIO. In other appointments, Scott Evans was named VP of Grocery/GM merchandising. Ken Warfield was named Director of Loss Prevention and Security.

Raley’s appointed Lee Worthy as VP of Pharmacy and Wellness at the chain’s 99 pharmacies. Mr. Worthy recently led pharmacy operations for Safeway’s Seattle division.

Topco Associates announced that Shawn Greenwald has been named new Senior VP & Chief Information Officer. Greenwald will be report to Randy Skoda, President and CEO.

Financial Focus:

Sobeys announced fiscal 2013 sales of 17.61 billion.


Mergers and Acquisitions:

Empire Cos., parent of the Sobeys chain, said it would buy Safeway Canada for $5.8 billion (Canadian). The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is expected to close in the fall. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval in Canada.

Kroger has agreed to pay $2.4 billion, or $49.38 per share, for Harris Teeter Supermarkets. Harris Teeter, which has stores in eight states and the District of Columbia, will operate as a Kroger subsidiary and maintain its senior management

VPS Convenience Store Group has acquired the 17-unit Bread Box chain located in the greater Knoxville area.

Industry Insight:

A&P intends to close three Pathmark stores in Southern New Jersey.

Belle Foods, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection July 1, has sought court approval to close 13 of its 57 stores.

Publix will open a 45,000-sq.-ft. store in an East Manatee, FL shopping plaza in October. The shopping center will also house a Beef ‘O’ Brady’s and Subway restaurant.

Shaw’s Markets said it will close six underperforming stores — the first store closures among any of the former Supervalu properties acquired earlier this year by Albertsons.

Real Estate:

Houchens Industries plans to bring its Price Less Foods banner to Louisville, Ky., starting with three locations. The stores, part of the Independent Grocers Alliance, are expected to create about 180 jobs.

Roche Bros. plans to open the first location of its new small-store concept in Medfield, MA, early next year.

WinCo Foods is expected to open its first two Texas stores in the next 18 months, adding 400 jobs. The employee-owned chain, based in Idaho, has 89 stores in 17 states and is looking at additional Texas locations. “We have a number of sites we’ve identified and are working toward closure,” spokesman Michael Read said. “It’s too early to tell what the ultimate number might be, but we’re looking at several.”

Green Initiatives:

An energy-efficient, 35,000-square-foot Hannaford Supermarkets store has opened in Bradford VT replacing a 13,000-square-foot location.