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    Safeway Launches New GroceryWorks Internet Service

    PORTLAND, Ore. - Safeway Inc. announced on Monday the formal launch of Safeway.com, the company's Internet grocery shopping and home delivery service, to consumers living in the Portland-metro and Vancouver, Wash. communities.

    PORTLAND, Ore. - Safeway Inc. announced on Monday the formal launch of Safeway.com, the company's Internet grocery shopping and home delivery service, to consumers living in the Portland-metro and Vancouver, Wash. communities. Safeway will offer the service through GroceryWorks, an Internet-based home shopping service, which is 50% owned by Safeway and 35% owned by Tesco plc, the number one food retailer in the UK and operator of Tesco.com, the world's most successful seller of groceries online.

    "The online grocery business in the United States has dramatically changed in a few short years. We believe the successful online grocery models will be operated by an established brick-and-mortar grocery retailer such as Safeway, which has significant purchasing power, a well-established brand and distribution infrastructure, high-quality perishables, and premium store brands," said Vasant Prabhu, Safeway's EVP, CFO and president of e-commerce businesses.

    "With the launch of Safeway.com in the Portland area we are looking forward to 'delivering our best' to local online customers. The area has become a high-tech hub, with more than 1,200 technology companies and approximately 67% of area households have Internet access. Locally, Safeway operates a strong store system with new, large, full-service stores in excellent locations. This positions us well to provide an exceptional service to consumers and develop a successful online grocery shopping and home delivery service," said Steve Frisby, president of GroceryWorks.

    Nearly all items available in a Safeway store are available for purchase online and at the in-store prices -- including Safeway Club Card specials.

    The Web site is designed similar to the aisles in-store where products are organized into various sections including frozen foods, dairy products, fresh produce, grocery and non-food items, making it easy for customers to locate and select items to buy. Customers can choose the brand they prefer including Safeway brands and select fruit or vegetables to suit their own "ripeness" preferences. Orders are delivered the next day between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m. and within a two-hour time slot selected by the customer. Same-day delivery is available for orders placed before 10 a.m. Deliveries are made seven days a week.

    Orders are processed by trained personal shoppers located in a nearby Safeway store. The shoppers select each item on the shopping list. Once complete, the order is carefully packaged and loaded into a temperature controlled truck. Frozen goods are stored in a specially designed freezer compartment; produce and other perishables are placed into a separate refrigerated section and dry products are stored under ambient temperature. A friendly Safeway.com courier delivers the order directly to the door and will gladly carry the groceries into the customer's home. The cost of the service is $9.95 and no minimum order is required.

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