UPDATE: Kroger will buy Teeter, no store closings planned
UPDATE 10:20 A.M.
If you’re a regular customer of the two Harris Teeter Supermarkets Inc. grocery stores in High Point, you shouldn’t notice any change from the upcoming sale of the company to Kroger Co.
The two companies announced Tuesday that Kroger, one of the nation’s largest supermarket chains, will buy Harris Teeter for $2.44 billion. However, Kroger indicates that it will retain the name and management of the 212 Harris Teeter grocery stores, operating them as a subsidiary of Kroger. No store closings are planned, the companies said.
“We look forward to bringing together the best of Kroger and Harris Teeter while continuing to operate and grow the Harris Teeter brands,” said David Dillon, Kroger’s chairman and chief executive officer.
Harris Teeter has a significant presence in the city’s grocery business market through its two locations at High Point Mall on Eastchester Drive and at Oak Hollow Village on Skeet Club Road in north High Point.
Kroger last had a presence in High Point 14 years ago. Ironically, Kroger’s departure from High Point related to Harris Teeter.
In the spring of 1999, Kroger swapped several grocery store locations with Harris Teeter that included the former Kroger in the Centre Stage shopping center on Eastchester Drive near Centennial Street. But the location was so close to the High Point Mall Harris Teeter that Harris Teeter closed the former Kroger in 2002. The space that had been Kroger and Harris Teeter now is occupied by the High Point Hobby Lobby craft supply store.
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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Kroger, the country's largest traditional supermarket operator, said Tuesday that it has agreed to buy Harris Teeter Supermarkets Inc. for about $2.44 billion in cash.
The deal expands Cincinnati-based Kroger's store base in the southeastern and mid-Atlantic markets and increases the number of states it operates in by three to 34.
Under the terms of the agreement, Kroger will pay $49.38 for each of the fellow supermarket chain's shares. The price represents a 2 percent increase over the company's Monday closing stock price.
"This is a financially and strategically compelling transaction and a unique opportunity for our shareholders and associates," Kroger Chairman and CEO David Dillon said in a statement.
The deal has been approved by both companies' boards. Harris Teeter announced in February that it was exploring strategic alternatives, including a possible sale.
Harris Teeter operates 212 stores in eight southeastern and mid-Atlantic states and Washington DC, along with a pair of distribution centers and a dairy facility in North Carolina. Its fiscal 2012 revenue totaled about $4.5 billion.
In comparison, Kroger operates 2,419 stores in 31 states. In addition to its flagship brand of supermarkets, it also owns Ralphs, Fry's and Food 4 Less.
After the deal closes, Harris Teeter will become a Kroger subsidiary and will continue to be led by members of its current senior management. There are no plans to close stores and the company will remain based in Matthews, N.C.