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Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: December 5th, 2020, 12:10 pm
by storewanderer
pseudo3d wrote: December 5th, 2020, 11:55 am
Yeah, my math is wrong, it should be only one Balducci's closing. If one closes, they have 8 Balducci's stores (with at least one airport store) and coming out to 27 between Kings and Balducci's.
The airport stores are run by HMS Host but get some products from Balducci's. So these are more of a licensing/supply arrangement vs. actual operated stores.

Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: March 16th, 2021, 8:13 am
by marshd1000
Looks like the sale of Kings and Balducci's to Albertsons closed in January:

https://www.albertsonscompanies.com/new ... uccis.html

Looking at the King's website, they have quite a few of their own "King's" branded private label products. I wonder how many will be replaced by Signature or Lucerne? It seems to me that here in Washington State, the Haggen stores mostly have the standard Albertsons/Safeway private label. The only thing I really see branded as Haggen are service bakery items, some but not all private label ice cream and gallon milk. Haggen does have Lucerne in other sizes of milk.

Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: March 16th, 2021, 4:05 pm
by storewanderer
marshd1000 wrote: March 16th, 2021, 8:13 am Looks like the sale of Kings and Balducci's to Albertsons closed in January:

https://www.albertsonscompanies.com/new ... uccis.html

Looking at the King's website, they have quite a few of their own "King's" branded private label products. I wonder how many will be replaced by Signature or Lucerne? It seems to me that here in Washington State, the Haggen stores mostly have the standard Albertsons/Safeway private label. The only thing I really see branded as Haggen are service bakery items, some but not all private label ice cream and gallon milk. Haggen does have Lucerne in other sizes of milk.
They may have been more comfortable putting Safeway private label programs into Haggen given Safeway is dominant and appears to have a pretty good reputation in Washington.

In the case of Acme's reputation back there where this King's chain operates... not sure about that. They may just need a little more time to streamline the distribution. It looks like they need to drive traffic into these King's Stores, big opportunity there.

Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: March 16th, 2021, 5:55 pm
by Bagels
marshd1000 wrote: March 16th, 2021, 8:13 am Looks like the sale of Kings and Balducci's to Albertsons closed in January:

https://www.albertsonscompanies.com/new ... uccis.html

Looking at the King's website, they have quite a few of their own "King's" branded private label products. I wonder how many will be replaced by Signature or Lucerne? It seems to me that here in Washington State, the Haggen stores mostly have the standard Albertsons/Safeway private label. The only thing I really see branded as Haggen are service bakery items, some but not all private label ice cream and gallon milk. Haggen does have Lucerne in other sizes of milk.
Private label products are generally the most profitable in any given supermarket. I would be surprise if Albertsons' private label program DIDN'T quickly replace Kings/Balducci's. And it'll go beyond that -- product selection, layout and presentation is generally similar across Albertsons' banners. Eventually, they'll converge.

Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: March 17th, 2021, 3:13 am
by pseudo3d
storewanderer wrote: March 16th, 2021, 4:05 pm
marshd1000 wrote: March 16th, 2021, 8:13 am Looks like the sale of Kings and Balducci's to Albertsons closed in January:

https://www.albertsonscompanies.com/new ... uccis.html

Looking at the King's website, they have quite a few of their own "King's" branded private label products. I wonder how many will be replaced by Signature or Lucerne? It seems to me that here in Washington State, the Haggen stores mostly have the standard Albertsons/Safeway private label. The only thing I really see branded as Haggen are service bakery items, some but not all private label ice cream and gallon milk. Haggen does have Lucerne in other sizes of milk.
They may have been more comfortable putting Safeway private label programs into Haggen given Safeway is dominant and appears to have a pretty good reputation in Washington.

In the case of Acme's reputation back there where this King's chain operates... not sure about that. They may just need a little more time to streamline the distribution. It looks like they need to drive traffic into these King's Stores, big opportunity there.
What I see happening is that Kings' former upscale cachet has declined in the recent past, leaving it something to be desired but still overpriced for the market, hence its vulnerability in the market. The new blue logo seems to be less "upscale" than the old logo (no more "Where Inspiration Strikes" tagline, either) and I think that Albertsons will start re-positioning Kings to be middle market (and not as overpriced). Longer range, they might rebrand the NYC-area ACME stores as Kings, but that won't happen until they get a handle on Kings.

Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: March 17th, 2021, 11:29 am
by klkla
The majority of King's stores are too small to transition from 'upscale' to 'mainstream'. I don't think they will succeed if they are not able to distinguish themselves by having better product quality and service compared to chains with bigger stores.

Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: March 17th, 2021, 11:04 pm
by rwsandiego
While I am not a fan of the new logo's blue color, the old logo looked dated and needed to change if King's wanted to convey a current image.

Re: Albertsons buys Kings

Posted: March 18th, 2021, 10:58 am
by Bagels
klkla wrote: March 17th, 2021, 11:29 am The majority of King's stores are too small to transition from 'upscale' to 'mainstream'. I don't think they will succeed if they are not able to distinguish themselves by having better product quality and service compared to chains with bigger stores.
IIRC, Albertsons did not purchase the "mini" locations. The locations they did acquire are (generally) slightly smaller than the industry average, but King's stocked them pretty tight.

Debt aside, the chains had been struggling for quite some time, and Albertsons did initially suggest that they would covert them to the ACME banner before relenting and saying the stores would keep their identity. Again, I would be surprised if they ultimately DIDN'T converge to a fork of the Albertsons format. These were never high-grossing/high-volume stores, so it isn't like Albertsons has much to lose.