REPORTS: ALBERTSONS, BRISTOL FARMS TALK MERGER
vestment firm that owns Bristol Farms Markets here declined to comment last week on reports it may be in negotiations to sell the 11-store upscale chain to Albertsons, Boise, Idaho. Albertsons officials were not available for comment. Bristol Farms is owned by Oaktree Capital Management, which acquired the company in 1995. The chain last year said it generates annual sales of almost $152 million, or about $265,000 per week per store. In a speech last year, Kevin Davis, Bristol Farms chairman, president and chief executive officer, said the 11 stores average 14,000 square feet, with newer stores ranging from 19,000 to 20,000 square feet..
KROGER LAUNCHES LABOR NEGOTIATIONS IN MIDWEST
CINCINNATI -- Kroger here has began negotiations with United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1099, representing about 8,500 employees at 70 stores here, in northern Kentucky and southeastern Indiana. The current agreement expired Oct. 9. A spokesman for the union declined to comment on the talks, other than to say that additional meetings have been scheduled for September. A Kroger spokesman could not be reached for comment.
TARGET EYES INTERNATIONAL ACQUISITIONS: REPORTS
MINNEAPOLIS -- Target here is considering the acquisition of British supermarket company J Sainsbury, according to reports. The discount store operator, which said it planned to ramp up its international expansion efforts following the recent sale of its Marshall Field's chain, also was reported last week to be exploring the purchase of Canadian department store chain Hudson's Bay Co., Toronto. Target could not be reached for comment.
ALBERTSONS TRIMS HOURS, BENEFITS IN OKLAHOMA
BOISE, Idaho -- Albertsons here plans to cut hours and benefits for some store employees at its 31 Oklahoma stores, according to published reports. The Associated Press reported the chain has moved some full-time employees to part-time status and has stopped paying benefits to employees who work fewer than 30 hours a week. Albertsons officials could not be reached for comment last week. Employees at the chain's 31 Oklahoma stores are not unionized.
MIAMI DEVELOPER BUYS BOSTON-AREA PROPERTIES
NORTH MIAMI BEACH, Fla. -- Equity One here, an owner and developer of supermarket-anchored shopping centers, said last week it has entered the Boston market through the purchase of six properties in the area from Charlesbank Capital Partners, Boston, in a transaction valued at $120 million. Five of the sites are anchored by Shaw's and the sixth by Whole Foods Market. Most of Equity One's 188 properties are in the South.
CIES RELEASES GLOBAL STUDY ON INDUSTRY'S IMPACT
PARIS -- CIES, the international food retailing association, released the results of a study last week that attempt to describe the impact of food retailing on the economy and on society globally. The 140-page report, which was compiled by the Oxford Institute of Retail Management, concludes that scant data is available on the impact of the industry. "Official statistics in all countries appear generally much weaker concerning retailing than manufacturing," the report states. It also concludes that "retailing has fundamental significance...Retailers actively stimulate demand, which impacts on economic growth. They play a fundamental part in educating consumers about new products. Retailers' brands and ranges often act as a guarantor of quality, traceability, authenticity and safety."