Friday, January 25, 2013

Cerberus to invest in Supervalu, install new leadership

Only a couple weeks after a group led by Cerberus Capital Management agreed to buy five Supervalu grocery chains for $3.3 billion, an investment group led by Cerberus is scheduled to take control of 20-30% of Supervalu and install a new executive leadership group.

According to Neil Stern, a senior partner at McMillanDoolittle, it's a good deal for Supervalu "because it makes it a more viable company in the long run (by turning) the clock back to where it was in 2006, before the Albertsons acquisition, and it will now be clearer how the company is performing."

Once the deal is done, Supervalu will continue to:


  • Operate as a wholesale distributor;
  • Own or license the Save-A-Lot chain;
  • Own the 184 stores operating as Cub Foods, Shoppers Food & Pharmacy, Farm Fresh, Shop 'n Save and Hornbacher's.

In addition, Sam Duncan will become Supervalu's president and chief executive officer. He has previously served in similar capacities at OfficeMax, ShopKo Stores, Fred Meyer and Ralphs Grocery Co.

According to analysts, Supervalu will have to develop a new organizational structure, cut costs, turn Save-A-Lot around and devise a long-term financial plan for the company.

Many believe the company's success will be driven by Save-A-Lot, as traditional grocery stores have more limited growth prospects.

Related story: Supervalu sells Acme and four other brands; Kimco in on the deal

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