Safeway seen buyout target

Feb. 22, 2008 at 10:19 AM

CHICAGO, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- The managing director of Egan-Jones Ratings Co. says the entire Safeway grocery store chain could be bought, it was reported Friday.

"Grocery stores generate stable cash flow. They are the quintessential buyout candidates," Sean Egan told the Chicago Sun-Times.

Egan said that the supermarket chain could be purchased by a private-equity concern, and named Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co., Thomas H. Lee Partners and Madison Dearborn Partners as potential buyers.

Safeway, which tried to sell its Chicago-based Dominick's food store chain in 2001, "is close to the top of the list," of targeted buyouts, Egan said.

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