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MINNEAPOLIS - Supervalu, Inc., based here, today held its annual meeting of shareholders in Norfolk, Va., during which the company's board of directors approved a 5 percent increase in the annual dividend to 61 cents per share frpm last year's level of 58 cents per share.
The new quarterly dividend of $0.1525 per share will be effective with the September dividend payment. The previously announced quarterly dividend, Which is payable June 15, will be paid at last year's quarterly amount of $0.1460 per share. Supervalu has paid dividends for more than 60 years.
"The 5 percent dividend increase is reflective of our strong operating results in fiscal 2004 and the company's financial position," said Jeff Noddle, Supervalu chairman and c.e.o. "We continue Supervalu's long history of dividend payments with this increase."
The board of directors also authorized the repurchase of up to 5 million shares of Supervalu common stock, or approximately 4 percent of shares outstanding, to offset the issuance of shares over time under the company's employee benefit plans. This new authorization allows Supervalu to minimize the dilutive impact of shares issued in conjunction with employee benefit plans. The new authorization supplements the Supervalu 2001 share repurchase program related to employee benefit plans.
At the meeting, shareholders elected Charles M. Lillis, Jeffrey Noddle, and Steven S. Rogers to three-year terms; Ronald E. Daily to a two-year term; and Marissa Peterson to a one-year term.
Shareholders also ratified the appointment of KPMG, LLP to audit the company's financial statements for the current fiscal year. KPMG has been Supervalu's external auditor since fiscal 1999.
Shareholders, in accordance with the board of directors' recommendation, didn't approve the nonbinding shareholder proposal to provide that, to be elected or re-elected to the board, nominees must receive the vote of a majority of the shares entitled to vote and present in person or by proxy at an annual meeting of shareholders. The proposal was submitted by The United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Fund, the beneficial owner of about 2,300 shares of the company's common stock.
The meeting also marked the retirement of Harriet Perlmutter, a 26-year member of the board.