A&P shedding 7 stores in northern Connecticut

by Eric Schroeder
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MONTVALE, N.J. — The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, Inc. (A&P) has agreed to sell seven stores in northern Connecticut to Big Y Foods, Inc., Springfield, Mass. A&P said the sale is part of its turnaround strategy first announced in late July to generate sustained profitability and cash flow, drive sales growth, restore competitive margins and strengthen the foundation of the company for the long term.

“We continue to evaluate our operating footprint and its alignment with our turnaround strategy,” said Sam Martin, president and chief executive officer of A&P. “These seven stores were clearly outside of our core markets and their sale was necessary.

“The company faces many difficult decisions over the next several months that are required to strengthen our foundation and improve our performance going forward.”

Founded in 1859, A&P is one of the nation’s oldest supermarket chains, currently operating 429 stores in 8 states and the District of Columbia under the following trade names: A&P, Waldbaum’s, Pathmark, Pathmark Sav-a-Center, Best Cellars, The Food Emporium, Super Foodmart, Super Fresh and Food Basics.

Big Y Foods began as a 900-square-foot grocery at a Y intersection in Chicopee, Mass. It now operates about 55 supermarkets throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut, mostly under the Big Y World Class Markets name. In March 2003, Big Y acquired four former A&P Super FoodMart stores in the towns of South Hadley, Springfield and Westfield, Mass., and Enfield, Conn.

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