Ahold and Delhaize confirmed last month that they are in the early stages of merger talks, and analysts believe a deal could be struck this year. Ahold is the parent company for Ahold USA, which includes Giant Food, Martin’s, Stop & Shop, and Peapod. The Delhaize Group includes Delhaize America, which consists of Food Lion and Hannaford. Both companies are based in Europe.

Analysts said that both companies combined produced sales of $60.5 billion last year, of which about 61% came from the U.S.

The companies discussed a merger in 2006, but an agreement was not reached.

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