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Albertsons Cos., the second-largest supermarket operator following its recent $9 billion merger with Safeway early this year, filed for an initial public offering on Wednesday.
The offering is listed to raise approximately $100 million, though the number of shares set to hit the trading floor has not yet been disclosed. Albertsons said it plans to use the IPO monies to pay down debt and fund other corporate initiatives. It also has plans to open new stores and upgrade others, including related recent news that it will open eight new and replacement stores in 2015 and remodel a total of 115 existing stores across most of its operating divisions.
The stock sale is being led by Goldman, Sachs & Co., BofA Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and Lazard.
The news represents the latest upheaval for Albertsons, which was merged with Safeway following the Pleasanton, Calif.-based grocer's purchase by Cerberus. As PG previously reported, the merger prompted the divesture of 168 of the grocers' combined stores – 146 of which were sold to Pacific Northwest-based Haggen – following review by the FTC.
Albertsons operates 2,205 grocery stores in 33 states and the District of Columbia under 18 distinct banners, including its namesake brand, as well as Safeway, Vons, Jewel-Osco, Shaw’s, Acme, Tom Thumb, Randalls, United Supermarkets, Pavilions, Star Market and Carrs.