US grocer SuperValu has announced plans to buy back up to US$70m of the company’s shares.

The retailer’s board yesterday (28 May) gave the go-ahead for the plan, which replaces last year’s plan to buy back $235m in shares.

Last month, Supervalu posted rising sales and earnings for its 2008 fiscal year.

The company booked net earnings of US$593m, up 31% on the year. Net sales climbed 18% to $44m.

Supervalu benefited from a full year’s contribution from the business in its 2008 fiscal year. The company’s 2007 results included 38 weeks of Albertson‘s sales and earnings.