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A federal bankruptcy court has approved the sale of a substantial number of Haggen stores that went up for auction in the wake of the defunct company's bankruptcy filing.
Some 33 locations will return to ownership under Albertsons LLC in a transaction estimated at $14 million. Those stores, located in Arizona, California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington, are among the 146 originally sold to Haggen as a result of Albertsons' merger with Safeway early this year.
An additional 32 stores in Central and Southern California will go to Commerce, Calif-based Smart & Final -- four of which are supplemental to Smart & Final's previously announced stalking-horse bid – for a total cash purchase of $68 million.
"This strategic acquisition puts us ahead in 'Project 100,' our plan to open 100 new stores, add 100 new teams and invest in 100 new neighborhood projects in the next four years," said Smart & Final CEO David Hirz.
The court also approved the sale of four Haggen stores to Sprouts Farmers Market; three to Tawa Inc.; and one store each to Stater Bros., Good Food Holdings and Yoke's Market.
Late last year, Haggen announced plans to purchase 146 stores from the Albertsons-Safeway merger, for more than $300 million. After struggling to find success amid conversions to the Haggen banner, the Pacific Northwest grocer filed for bankruptcy in early September.