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Kroger Acquires Harris Teeter In $2.5B Deal

July 10, 2013

The U.S. market’s second-largest retailer is about to get bigger. Supermarket giant Kroger, second only to Walmart in U.S. retail sales at $90 billion, agreed yesterday to acquire fellow grocery chain Harris Teeter for $2.5 billion. Harris Teeter—which operates 212 stores across North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, Maryland, Delaware and Washington, D.C.—had revenues of $4.5 billion last year. The acquisition will extend Kroger’s U.S. footprint to 2,600 locations across 34 states. Harris Teeter will operate as a subsidiary within Kroger and retain its key executives.

Both Kroger and Harris Teeter have been increasingly aggressive players in beverage alcohol. Kroger has annual beverage alcohol revenues of more than $3 billion, with beer accounting for about 47% of sales, wine at 36% and spirits at 17%, according to Market Watch. The group has set the goal of tripling its percentage of private-label alcohol sales to 15% within five years.

Harris Teeter, meanwhile, unveiled a new store concept last fall intended to expand its presence in alcohol and specialty goods. The recently launched concept, 201central, stocks 3,100 types of wine, 680 varieties of beer and 35 varieties of beer in kegs, as well as cigars, cheeses and international foods. It also sells equipment for home-brewing and winemaking, fields in-store wine consultants and holds educational classes focused on wine, beer and food pairings.

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