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    Ahold to Sell C-Store Group to The Pantry

    Zaandam, The Netherlands -- Ahold has reached an agreement to sell Golden Gallon, its fuel and merchandise convenience store operation in the southeastern United States, to The Pantry, Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

    Zaandam, The Netherlands -- Ahold has reached an agreement to sell Golden Gallon, its fuel and merchandise convenience store operation in the southeastern United States, to The Pantry, Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

    The transaction is subject to antitrust approval and the satisfaction of other conditions, and is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2003.

    The divestment of Golden Gallon is part of Ahold's strategic plan to restructure its portfolio to focus on core food businesses.

    The assets to be sold include the Golden Gallon operations, working capital, and all of the real estate. More than 1,000 store associates will be transferred to The Pantry, which also has the option of hiring approximately 70 nonstore employees. Should they not transfer to The Pantry, Ahold is committed to providing outplacement counseling assistance to any of the associates who may be displaced.

    Ahold acquired Golden Gallon in May 2000. The 138-store chain is based in the Chattanooga region and stretches south to Atlanta and north to middle and eastern Tennessee. Stores are situated along major interstate highways and in suburban areas. Unaudited net sales in 2002 amounted to approximately $375 million.

    The Pantry, headquartered in Sanford, N.C., is a leading convenience store operator in the southeastern United States and is the third-largest independently operated convenience store chain in the country. The company is listed on Nasdaq and operates approximately 1,300 stores in 10 states with 2002 sales of about $2.5 billion.

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