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Kroger Is Buying Harris Teeter Supermarkets For $2.5 Billion

Kroger announced it is buying Harris Teeter.
Mike Kalasnik via Flickr, Creative Commons

Two of the largest grocery store chains in North Carolina announced their merger Tuesday.  Kroger is buying North Carolina-based Harris Teeter in a deal worth $2.5 billion.  Kroger will also pay cash for all of Harris Teeter's outstanding shares for $49.38 per share.

Kroger CFO Mike Schlotman told investors today there are no plans to close any Harris Teeter supermarkets or remove the banner from buildings.

“The Harris family and the Teeter family founded those chains independently and came together several years ago to form Harris Teeter and that name resonates in the markets they’re in.”

Schlotman said one reason Kroger wanted the 212 Harris Teeter stores was because of location – in the high-growth southeast and mid-Atlantic regions, including Washington, DC, Charlotte and the Raleigh-Durham market.

Tammy Tackett was shopping today at the Harris Teeter on MLK Boulevard in Durham.  She hopes the merger doesn’t change her shopping experience.

“Even if they do, this is still where I am going to be , so, it’s close I don’t think they can do too much to damage it.”

Tackett especially likes Harris Teeter's produce section.  Kroger likes it too, adding Kroger can learn a lot from Harris Teeter's "fresh category."

The deal between Kroger and Harris Teeter still needs to be closed by regulators.  Kroger is based in Ohio and owns more than 2,400 supermarkets and other stores in 31 states.

Leoneda Inge is WUNC’s race and southern culture reporter, the first public radio journalist in the South to hold such a position. She also is co-host of the podcast Tested and host of the special podcast series, PAULI. Leoneda is the recipient of numerous awards from AP, RTDNA and NABJ. She’s been a reporting fellow in Berlin and Tokyo. You can follow her on Twitter @LeonedaInge.
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