C&S Wholesale Grocers To Acquire The Grocers Supply Co.

C&S Wholesale Grocers Inc. and The Grocers Supply Co. Inc. said Monday that C&S has agreed to acquire the wholesale distribution and supply business of Grocers Supply.

The acquisition will include Grocers Supply’s warehouse and distribution operations in the Houston, Dallas and Rio Grande Valley areas along with its approximately 1,800 employees, but will not include any of Grocers Supply’s retail operations.

The Grocers Supply Co., based in Houston, is the largest wholesale grocery supplier in Texas, supplying more than 900 independent grocery stores.

The transaction is expected to close before year-end and is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.

“The Grocers Supply Company has a century-long legacy of providing the highest level of service to its valued customers, which are primarily independent retailers and regional chains,” said Rick Cohen, chairman and CEO of Keene, New Hampshire-based C&S. “We very much look forward to partnering with the Grocers Supply team to continue this tradition and to expand the services and offerings available to its customers through the strength and scale of C&S. C&S is excited to enter the Southwestern United States market and to have the opportunity to service this growing and vital region.”

Grocers Supply distributes all major product lines, including grocery, frozen, dairy, meat, produce, general merchandise and health and beauty care, and also is known as one of the leading distributors of Hispanic grocery products in the country, focusing on Texas-made and Texas-grown products. Grocers Supply’s largest customer is the Fiesta Mart chain of stores, which includes 60 retail locations, and is among the largest grocers in the country serving the Hispanic market.

“C&S is strongly committed to maintaining the service and product assortment that Grocers Supply’s loyal customers have come to expect,” said Cohen. “This is an exciting opportunity for both companies, as well our customers and employees, as we combine the best aspects of Grocers Supply and C&S to produce a truly differentiated offering to the independent grocer.”

Max Levit, president of Grocers Supply, said, “As the Levit family planned for the next 100 years with the goal of sustaining the Grocers Supply wholesale business, we determined that selling the wholesale business would be in the best interest of its stakeholders. We carefully selected C&S Wholesale Grocers as the best choice for our employees and customers because of C&S’s commitment to growth, operational excellence and service to independent grocers. We appreciate our loyal employees’ numerous accomplishments and look forward to seeing their future successes.”

C&S Wholesale Grocers is the largest wholesale grocery supply company in the U.S., supplying 5,000 independent supermarkets, chain stores, military bases and institutions with more than 150,000 different products. Founded in 1918 as a supplier to independent grocery stores, C&S now services customers of all sizes, from independent retailers to large chains.

About The Author

A nine-year employee of The Shelby Report who writes for and about food. In previous lives, she worked at a police department in Texas and an amusement park in Arkansas. She also was a newspaper publisher for more than a decade. Not sure which of those qualified her for this job.