Publix acquisition would broaden entry into Virginia

Virginia is the seventh state Publix has added to its territory.
Virginia is the seventh state Publix has added to its territory.

Lakeland-based Publix Super Markets has contingent plans to broaden its entry into Virginia by purchasing 10 supermarkets there branded as Martin’s Food Markets.

The 10-store acquisition agreement depends on a ruling by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) unrelated to Publix.

Publix’s deal with a unit of Ahold USA Inc. is contingent upon FTC approval of a pending merger of Ahold with grocery chain Delhaize Group.

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Unless it buys 10 Martin’s Food Markets sooner, Publix will open its first Virginia location in the Bristol area by year-end, making the state the seventh in the grocer’s territory. Publix also plans to open a supermarket in Glen Allen, Virginia, in early 2018.

The 10 supermarkets would continue operating under the Martin’s brand for a while but eventually will be converted to Publix stores, which will involve remodeling work.

Publix’s expansion into Virginia follows its entry into North Carolina, where its first store in the state opened in February 2014.

Publix also has locations in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee and South Carolina. [Tampa Bay Times] Mike Seemuth