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Ahold, Delhaize: Merger may close this month

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European food/drug retailers expect final FTC clearance soon

FransMuller Delhaize_DickBoer Ahold_merger

Plans call for Ahold’s Dick Boer (right) to be the CEO of the merged company and Delhaize’s Frans Muller (left) to be deputy CEO.

BRUSSELS, Belgium — Delhaize Group and Ahold expect to complete their merger by the end of this month.

The companies said Tuesday that the closure of the $29 billion merger deal, announced in June 2015, still awaits final approval by the Federal Trade Commission.

Shareholders of the two European food and drug retailers, which each generate most of their sales in the United States, approved the deal in March of this year. The Belgian Competition Authority also gave the deal its conditional approval in March, leaving FTC approval as the final regulatory hurdle before the merger can proceed.

Dick Boer, CEO of Ahold, is slated to be the CEO of the combined company, and Frans Muller, CEO of Delhaize, has been tabbed as deputy CEO and chief integration officer. Ahold CFO Jeff Carr will serve as CFO of the combined company. Pierre Bouchut, currently CFO of Delhaize, will become chief operating officer for Europe. Plans call for current COOs of Ahold and Delhaize in the United States, James McCann and Kevin Holt, respectively, to stay on as COOs of those businesses.

The merger of Ahold and Delhaize will create an international retailer with more than 6,500 stores.

Ahold finished its most recent fiscal year with 788 supermarkets in the United States, operating under the Stop & Shop, Giant, Giant Super Food Stores, Giant Food Stores and Martins Food Markets banners. The company also operates the online grocer Peapod. Delhaize had 1,288 U.S. supermarkets at the end of its fiscal year. They operate under the Hannaford and Food Lion banners.

Overall in the United States, the combined company would have sales of around $37 billion, making it one of the largest food and pharmacy retailers.

Ahold on Tuesday also provided additional details on its €1 billion capital repayment and reverse stock split, which had been announced last year in conjunction with the merger deal.


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