Dutch retailer Ahold has today (Thursday) announced a deal to sell the 198 convenience stores of its US subsidiary Tops Markets  to WFI Acquisition, Inc., a corporation formed by Nanco Enterprises, Inc. and Bruckmann, Rosser, Sherrill & Co, Inc.

These are Ahold's remaining convenience stores in the United States. The stores will continue to operate under the banners of Wilson Farms and Sugarcreek.
 
The transaction is subject to the fulfilment of certain closing conditions and regulatory approvals. The closing of the transaction, the price of which was not disclosed, is expected in the second quarter of 2005.
 
On January 19, 2004, Ahold announced its intention to divest its convenience stores. The divestment of the Tops convenience stores is part of Ahold's strategic plan to restructure its portfolio in order to focus on its core food businesses.
 
Wilson Farms, a division of Tops Markets since 1969, operates convenience stores in Western and Central New York. The Sugarcreek convenience stores, all offering gasoline, were acquired by Tops in 2000 and are located in Central and Northern New York. The convenience stores employ approximately 2,400 associates.
 
Tops Markets, which Ahold acquired in 1991, will continue to operate full service supermarkets in Northern New York, Northeastern Ohio and Northern Pennsylvania.