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D’Agostino, one of New York City’s last independent, family-owned grocers, has been quietly seeking buyers for its nine remaining Manhattan locations, according to a published report.
The iconic Big Apple business once operated as many as 26 stores and as recently as last year had 13, but expensive leases and tough competition from brick-and-mortar and online rivals have led to its decline, per a report in The New York Post, which noted interest from local retailer cooperative Key Food, which bought 23 stores and the rights to the upscale Food Emporium brand from A&P after that once-powerful chain declared bankruptcy; A&P subsequently went out of business. Key Food currently operates four Food Emporium stores, and is reportedly looking to open more.
“It would make tremendous sense, since D’Agostino’s operating results have suffered tremendously and Food Emporium is a very strong brand that can be brought back,” industry observer Burt Flickinger told the Post.
Staten Island, N.Y.-based Key Food declined to comment on the story, while D’Agostino’s President and COO Robert James said, “We have had no formal discussions recently and are not in discussions with anyone regarding a potential sale.”