USA: Statement from Gary Fernandes, Chairman and CEO of GroceryWorks.com
The following statement regarding Webvan's acquisition of HomeGrocer may be attributed to Gary Fernandes. GroceryWorks recently announced the completion of a deal to allow the company to become Safeway's exclusive online channel. "First, we believe Webvan's announcement that it will acquire HomeGrocer is tremendous news for the online grocery space. Clearly, it demonstrates further validation of our industry and will continue to create a buzz within the marketplace. Consolidation in the space does not surprise us. In fact, when we announced our deal with Safeway in April, we stated our strong belief that pure play dot.coms in the on-line grocery space must consolidate in order to survive. For us, the merger of the two companies means one less competitor in each of the markets where we plan to operate. In a market, which has demanded B2C profitability, I am convinced that GroceryWorks' 'brick and click' model will become the model for the industry. Having been through major mergers before, I know that Webvan and HomeGrocer will face some formidable challenges as they seek to complete the transaction and optimize the integration of the two companies. Any merger is a difficult and time-consuming task, which takes managers' attention away from running the company. During this time, GroceryWorks.com will continue to focus on our marketplace and our customers."
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