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What a difference a year makes.
After acquiring 146 stores from Albertsons LLC and Safeway last December and rocketing in record-time from 18 stores and 2,000 associates, to 164 stores and 10,000 associates, the final chapter is in the works for the Bellingham, Wash.-based Haggen, which has gained approval to sell its remaining 33 stores in Washington and Oregon as part of its bankruptcy proceedings which began in early September.
After receiving bankruptcy court approval late last week to auction off its remaining stores at a hearing on Feb. 5, the embattled Pacific Northwest grocer will reportedly actively market the last of its locations and negotiate deals with the highest bidders in the interim.
In a statement, Haggen officials said the remaining stores are poised to attract strong buyers because they are "well established and profitable."
“The Haggen group of core stores is well run with great staff and is located in great communities. As a group they are profitable," a company spokeswoman was quoted as saying in local media reports. "Because of this, we know there will be strong interest in our stores as a group. Our stores are staffed and stocked to high standards, and we are well prepared to offer a great store experience for our guests during this holiday time.”