ABINGDON, Va. & JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Grocery retailer Food City will add gas stations to as many of the 29 BI-LO stores it purchased in Tennessee and Georgia this week as it can, according to company officials.
Parent company K-VA-T Food Stores Inc., Abingdon, Va., will acquire the BI-LO stores in Chattanooga, Tenn., and Northwest Georgia from Southeastern Grocers, Jacksonville, Fla. K-VA-T intends to operate all of these stores under the Food City banner and hire the vast majority of BI-LO’s store associates. It will, however, add gasoline outlets wherever possible. About 85% of K-VA-T’s 104 Food City stores have fuel locations, according to a report in the Times Free Press.
“We are extremely excited to have this opportunity to expand our operation into the Chattanooga and Northwest Georgia markets,” said Steven C. Smith, Food City president and chief executive officer. “Our consumers can rest assured that we plan to complete the conversion process as quickly as possible, with the least interruption to the normal flow of business. It’s our intention to enhance the overall variety and selection and further develop the services and conveniences provided to our shoppers.”
"We are pleased to enter into this transaction with K-VA-T, which we believe is the right decision not only for Southeastern Grocers, but also for our stores and associates in Chattanooga and Northwest Georgia,” said Ian McLeod, president and CEO of Southeastern Grocers. “This was not an easy decision for us, as we have the utmost respect for our associates who serve our customers in these stores so well.
“In the approach by K-VA-T, we believe we have identified a strong partner to ensure these 29 stores and our associates are positioned for continued success under another reputable regional brand. On behalf of the management team, I want to thank all of our hardworking BI-LO associates for their dedication and support over many years."