AB Acquisition, an investor group led by Cerberus Capital Management, agreed to purchase Safeway yesterday for $9 billion, or $40 per share. The transaction is expected to close by the end of the year.

Cerberus plans to fund the acquisition, which is being called an Albertsons – Safeway merger, with debt financing of about $7.6 billion and contributions from partners and co-investors.
According to Supermarket News, the merger will create a company with more than 2,400 stores, 27 distribution facilities, 20 manufacturing plants and over 250,000 employees. No store closures are anticipated for now, although experts believe “divestitures” may be possible since the companies overlap in certain markets, particularly along the West Coast.
Safeway CEO Robert Edwards will become CEO of the combined company.
Combined sales for Safeway and Albertsons in 2013 totaled nearly $60 billion.