Dutch Ahold has plans to acquire the majority of American supermarket chain A&P's 110 stores. The latter chain, on the brink of bankruptcy, is mostly active in the New York region.
Used to be the biggest in the US
According to the American paper New York Post, A&P will soon ask for a deferment of payment (better known as Chapter 11). That would mean that one of the oldest American supermarket companies, founded over 150 years ago, would disappear. Only 50 years ago, the chain was the country's largest supermarket chain.
Halfway the 20th century, A&P had grown to such a size, it was feared the group would become the sole player in the market. President Franklin D. Roosevelt even forced the company to split up to avoid it from having a monopoly. Over these past few years, it had to compete with Walmart and even bought the Pathmark chain, which is now proving to be the final nail in its coffin.
Sources have now indicated that Ahold has targeted most of the A&P stores. The Dutch company is already markedly present in the New York area, but would like to expand even more with this acquisition. An important competitor, Kroger, is also allegedly looking at A&P for possible expansion.
Thanks to its merger with Belgian Delhaize, Ahold will soon have some 6,500 stores in the United States.