PLEASANTON, Calif. — In a deal signaling cooperation between two of the largest supermarket operators in the U.S., Blackhawk Network here said it would roll out its third-party gift card program at stores operated by Kroger in time for the holidays. Blackhawk is a subsidiary of Safeway, also based here. Cincinnati-based Kroger is the largest U.S. supermarket chain with nearly 2,500 stores in 31 states. Kroger plans to support the launch of the new program with aggressive marketing campaigns that include television, radio and in-store promotions, Blackhawk said. Kroger will roll out the cards at its convenience stores in late 2008, Blackhawk added. Blackhawk also has deals to sell third-party gift cards in stores operated by Ahold, Food Lion, Ukrop’s and Stater Bros.
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