Albertsons parent Cerberus to buy Safeway

PLEASANTON, Calif. (AP) — Safeway says it's agreed to be acquired by an investment group led by Cerberus Capital Management, owner of Albertsons and several other supermarket chains.

The deal is worth about $7.64 billion in cash, and pending other transactions could top more than $9 billion.

It comes amid ongoing consolidation in the supermarket industry, which faces growing competition from big-box retailers, specialty chains, drug stores and even dollar stores.

Cerberus bought five chains, including Albertson's, from Supervalu last year. Kroger also recently snapped up regional chain Harris Teeter.

Safeway shareholders will receive $32.50 per share in cash. Pending other deals, the company says the deal is worth roughly $40 per share to stockholders.

The Pleasanton, Calif.-based company has more than 1,300 U.S. locations under banners that include Randall's and Tom Thumb.