Mergers and acquisitions


Washington court keeps Albertsons’ $4B payout on ice

The special dividend payout, which has been subject to legal wrangling while the grocer’s $24.6 billion merger plans with Kroger are reviewed, will be on hold at least until Nov. 17 when the next hearing will be held.


Albertsons’ $4B dividend payout temporarily blocked by court

The grocer must put the brakes on its special dividend payout to shareholders while its $24.6 billion merger plans with Kroger are under review, a judge in Washington ruled late Thursday.

One day after Washington’s attorney general sued the grocer, more states have joined in taking legal action against the retailer, saying the payout would leave it unable to compete with Kroger. The two grocers announced merger plans last month.

The state’s attorney general said giving out the special dividend would “weaken Albertsons’ ability to continue business operations and compete” amid a proposed $24.6 billion merger with Kroger. Albertsons called the suit "meritless."

Warren, Michigan-based Lipari, which sells refrigerated specialty items, was previously owned by private equity firm H.I.G. Capital.

AGs from a half dozen states are threatening legal action if Albertsons does not put the brakes on its planned “special dividend” payout of nearly $4 billion slated to go to shareholders next month.

The employee-owned grocer has entered into a purchase agreement to buy the seven-unit independent grocery retailer that has stores across central Louisiana and southwestern Mississippi.

The grocer, which is in the process of being acquired by Kroger for $24.6 billion, reported early Tuesday that its same-store sales rose 7.4% and digital sales were up 36% during the period ended Sept. 10.

Senators Amy Klobuchar and Mike Lee, who serve on the antitrust subcommittee, said Tuesday they have “serious concerns” about the $24.6 billion union of two grocery powerhouses.

The grocer joins Ada's Natural Market in Florida and Mother Earth’s Storehouse in New York as part of HCMC's grocery segment.

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