business news in context, analysis with attitude

  • Food Lion announced today it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire 10 Winn-Dixie stores in North Carolina and Virginia.

    The acquisition will carry out a key Food Lion growth strategy to fill in and reinforce its presence in the company’s current geographic footprint. Food Lion will pay for the stores in cash out of its planned 2004 capital expenditures budget.

    The stores, of which Food Lion will assume leases and acquire certain equipment and inventory, are located in Dunn, Elizabeth City, Elizabethtown and Havelock, N.C., and Clarksville, Danville, Farmville, Martinsville, South Hill and Stanleytown, Va.

    Food Lion will re-brand the stores in Clarksville, Danville, Martinsville, South Hill and Stanleytown, with only a few days’ gap in store operations. The store in Elizabethtown will be remodeled significantly to replace Food Lion’s current location in that town. Food Lion will conduct further analysis of the remaining locations to better determine how the stores fit in the company’s growth plans.

  • D'Agostino Supermarkets has launched what it is calling “D’AG Rewards,” using the S&H greenpoints program at all of the company’s 22 stores.

    Under the program, customers will earn 10 greenpoints for each dollar spent, and can see their current balance printed on their receipt. Shoppers can redeem their greenpoints on promoted items in the store, or by selecting from hundreds of rewards featured in a special print catalog and an online catalog.

  • Charlie Bell, the McDonald's CEO who has been undergoing chemotherapy and has had several surgeries since being diagnosed with colorectal cancer, reportedly has returned to work and has taped a voice mail message to the company’s franchisees.

    "On a personal note, I can't tell you how glad I am to be back in the office,” he said. "As I've said before, anyone going through cancer treatment has good days and bad days ... and it is certainly a good day when I can be here communicating with you."

    McDonald’s has not provided an update about Bell’s health since September 28, leading to rumors about the seriousness of his condition.

  • Published reports say that Penn Traffic has asked the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for a third extension to file a reorganization plan. The new date, if accepted by the court, would be January 24, 2005.

  • Published reports say that there’s a new food store opening in Issaquah, Washington, next week – Organic To Go, which will deliver gourmet meals to customers that are made “whenever possible” with organic ingredients.

    The business - funded by Dave Smith, co-founder of Smith & Hawken – is targeting expansion throughout the Seattle area as well as to Chicago by the mid-2005.

    "Organics is something I care a lot about, and this concept helps organic farmers get their food out, and gives consumers a way of having access to good organic food in a presentation they haven't had up until now," Smith told a local newspaper.

KC's View:
Call us crazy, but we think if you are going to call a business “Organic To Go,” you ought to be sure that all the food – not some of the food – actually is organic.