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TORONTO -- A&P Canada said yesterday that it would convert most of its Super C stores in the province of Ontario to the Food Basics value format. Seven of the Super C stores will become Food Basics locations by the end of April 2006, while one store, in Cornwall, will convert to the Loeb banner, and another, in Pembroke, will close Feb. 11.
"Food Basics is a well-established discount banner in Ontario, with 106 locations," explained A&P Canada senior e.v.p. Alain Brisebois in a statement. "Upon reviewing our current banner portfolio, we found that customers have a strong affiliation to the Food Basics brand. Therefore, we are investing in these conversions to provide customers with a consistent discount offer that they know and trust, across the province." The renovations are scheduled to begin in late March in the cities of Belleville, Kingston, Rockland, Kanata, Sudbury, and Timmins.
As part of the changeover to Food Basics, the Ontario Super C stores will be updated with elements of the discount format’s decor. Additionally, shoppers will start getting the Food Basics flyer, which features weekly specials. Over the next few months, A&P Canada's private label selection, including Master Choice, Equality, and Basics for Less will replace the Metro private label line now carried in the stores, and A&P's fresh department offerings would also become available at those locations.
Employees at the Super C stores that will be converted to Food Basics have received working notice and package options. "We thank the Super C employees for their service and hope to offer some of them the opportunity to work within the new Food Basics stores," said Brisebois. "All employees [at the Super C in Cornwall that will convert to a Loeb] will remain employed under the same working agreement."
The Super C banner will remain in Quebec, where the chain is a leader in the discount supermarket segment. Super C operates 52 stores and has more than 5,000 employees in the province.
A&P Canada, a wholly owned subsidiary of Montreal-based Metro, Inc. since July 2005, operates over 235 grocery stores under the A&P, Dominion, Ultra Food and Drug, The Barn, and Food Basics banners in Ontario. Metro operates a network of nearly 600 food stores in Ontario and Quebec under the banners Metro, Metro Plus, Super C, A&P, Dominion, Loeb, and Food Basics, in addition to more than 250 pharmacies under the banners Brunet, Clini Plus, The Pharmacy, and Drug Basics.