Gristedes head, former A&P exec emerge as top bidders for Food Emporium

John Catsimatidis
John Catsimatidis

The Food Emporium chain, owned by the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co., has hit the market again, for the second time in two years, previous reports show. But the sale has real estate investors eyeing more than the chain’s groceries, and two major bidders have emerged, Crain’s reported.

Among those interested in the real estate empire the 17-outpost chain commands, are John Catsimatidis, owner of Gristedes, and Christian Haub, former CEO of A&P, Crain’s said.

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Food Emporium’s Manhattan real estate could go a long way in a market where specialty grocers such as Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s enjoy ever-increasing popularity.

“We are very familiar with those stores and how to make them successful,” said Haub told Crain’s. His retailing conglomerate, the Tengelmann Group, sold its shares in A&P earlier this year. Catsimatidis made a bid for Food Emporium in 2010, shortly before the company fell into bankruptcy, but the deal fell apart. [Crain’s] Guelda Voien