Bi-Lo to discard Sweetbay banner

Bi-Lo to discard Sweetbay banner

Bi-Lo Holdings has secured regulatory approval for its acquisition of three US chains from Delhaize Group - but the clearance came with conditions.

The US Federal Trade Commission has given the green light to Bi-Lo's move to buy Delhaize's Sweetbay, Harveys and Reid's chains after the US retailer agreed to sell 12 of the stores and the Belgium-based group said it would keep two of the outlets.

Bi-Lo will offload five stores in Florida to Rowe's IGA and Food Giant. Six in Georgia will be sold to three buyers - Homeland, Food Giant Supermarkets and W. Lee Flowers and Company, which will also snap up an outlet in South Carolina.

Delhaize will hold on to a Reid's store in South Carolina and a Harveys outlet in Georgia and convert both to Food Lions.

Bi-Lo struck a $265m deal in May for the three chains. In October, it said it would keep the Harveys banner but discard Sweetbay and Reid's once the deal closes. Both sides now expect the transaction to be completed in May.