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Sullivan\’s Foods to be acquired by Coborn\’s

Coborn’s has agreed to acquire Illinois grocery chain Sullivan’s Foods in a deal that will add 11 stores to the Minneapolis-based retailer’s operations and mark its expansion to a sixth state, according to a Thursday press release sent by email.

Terms of the deal, which is on track to close in early May, were not disclosed.

Coborn’s said it plans to continue operating the locations it is absorbing under the Sullivan’s Foods banner and intends to hire all of the approximately 800 people employed by the family owned company. Corborn’s also intends to continue Sullivan Foods’ relationship with Associated Wholesale Grocers, according to the announcement.

In addition to the 11 grocery stores Sullivan’s Foods in northern and central Illinois, the company runs three Ace Hardware Stores, a warehouse and a convenience store that includes a fuel center.

“The Sullivan family has run their family of stores with great care and is a highly respected retailer,” Chris Coborn, chairman and CEO of Coborn’s, said in a statement. “We look forward to extending the same operating philosophies in these locations that have made us successful for 102 years – investing and training for our people, supporting our communities and investing in our stores to improve the experience for our guests.”

With the addition of the Sullivan’s Foods locations, Coborn’s will include 77 supermarkets in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Illinois and Michigan. The retailer, founded more than a century ago, also owns liquor stores, fuel centers, pharmacies and a franchised restaurant unit.

Sullivan’s Foods began operations in 1967 with a single grocery store in Savanna, Illinois, on the state’s border with Iowa.

Coborn’s deal to acquire Sullivan’s Foods follows its purchase in late 2021 of Tadych’s Econofoods, a six-store Michigan chain. In 2018, Coborn’s acquired North Dakota-based Hornbacher’s from United Natural Foods, Inc.

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