Sobeys Inc. has closed its purchase of Canada Safeway Ltd. from U.S. food and drug retailer Safeway Inc.

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Sobeys wraps up Canada Safeway acquisition

November 4th, 2013

STELLARTON, Nova Scotia – Sobeys Inc. has closed its purchase of Canada Safeway Ltd. from U.S. food and drug retailer Safeway Inc.

Canada's Competition Bureau late last month had cleared the way for Sobeys to complete the transaction.

"This is a great day in the 106-year history of Sobeys," Paul Sobey, president and chief executive officer of Empire Company Ltd., parent of Sobeys Inc., said in a statement. "The addition of Canada Safeway represents a unique and highly strategic opportunity to leverage Sobeys' modern asset base and provides us with a new and exciting platform for growth as we move forward."

The companies announced the $5.8 billion (Canadian) acquisition deal in June.

"We are pleased to have completed the sale of our Canadian operations to Sobeys," stated Robert Edwards, president and CEO of Safeway. "We believe this represents a significant contribution to shareholder value."

Under the agreement, Sobeys picks up 213 Safeway supermarkets in western Canada, as well as 199 in-store pharmacies, 62 on-site fuel stations, 10 liquor stores, four distribution centers and related wholesale business, and 12 manufacturing facilities.

The acquisition gives Sobeys more than 1,500 stores overall. Before the deal, Sobeys had over 1,300 owned and franchised stores — including about 250 pharmacies — in all 10 provinces under such banners as Sobeys, IGA, Foodland, FreshCo, Thrifty Foods, and Lawtons Drugs, plus more than 260 retail fuel locations.

With the deal, Sobeys now has roughly 450 pharmacy locations, including the 78 Lawtons stores.

"We welcome the 29,000 Safeway employees to the Sobeys team as we move forward together as one company, excited to serve the food shopping needs of consumers in western Canada," commented Marc Poulin, president and CEO of Sobeys.