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    Save Mart Supermarkets Finalizes Albertson's LLC NoCal Div. Purchase

    MODESTO, Calif. - Regional independent Save Mart Supermarkets here closed the deal for Albertson's LLC Northern California Division on Friday, buying 130 Albertson's stores in Northern California and Northern Nevada, its Roseville and Vacaville distribution centers, as well as the division office in Dublin, Calif.

    MODESTO, Calif. - Regional independent Save Mart Supermarkets here closed the deal for Albertson's LLC Northern California Division on Friday, buying 130 Albertson's stores in Northern California and Northern Nevada, its Roseville and Vacaville distribution centers, as well as the division office in Dublin, Calif.

    The purchase will swell the Save Mart chain to 254 retail stores and more than 23,000 associates.

    Save Mart said it plans to gradually convert all the Albertson's stores to its banner over the next nine months. It said it will continue to operate the stores under the Albertsons banner until the conversion.

    "Today we begin the process of making the best privately owned, regional grocery chain in the country much larger and more efficient," said Save Mart chairman and c.e.o. Bob Piccinini on Friday. "I committed to this purchase because I knew collectively we had the talent, experience, and drive to get it done. We will work hard to implement the best practices of both companies, making our entire chain of stores a superior shopping experience for all our valued customers."

    The company said it was still making decisions regarding the store banners and store conversion schedules. All 13,000 Albertson's LLC Northern California associates are invited to the Save Mart group, and those in bargaining agreements will maintain their seniority within their agreement as well as all non-bargaining associates, according to Save Mart.

    Steve Junqueiro, v.p. of Save Mart operations, will lead the transfer and continued operations of the Albertson's stores with oversight from Bob Spengler, president and c.o.o. and Piccinini.

    Donna Robbins, president of Albertson's Northern California Division LLC, has decided not to join Save Mart.

    Save Mart currently operates 124 stores. Eighty are full service supermarkets with 75 stores operating under the banner Save Mart Supermarkets from Bakersfield in the South, throughout Central California Valley to Galt, San Jose, and the East Bay. Five Stockton and Lodi full service stores operate under the S-MART foods banner.

    Save Mart's 44 price impact stores operate under the Food Maxx banner and are located in Bakersfield in the South, throughout the Central California Valley to Redding in the North, and Santa Maria and Salinas on the coast.

    Save Mart also owns and operates Yosemite Wholesale, a distribution center in Merced, SMART Refrigerated Transport trucking operation in Lathrop, and is a partner in Superstore Industries (SSI) located in Lathrop. SSI owns distribution centers and Sunnyside Farms manufacturing plants in Fairfield and Turlock.

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