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Tops, Price Chopper announce merger agreement

File Photo Tops Markets is pictured on Washington Street in Jamestown. The super market chain announced Monday it has agreed to a merger with Price Chopper/Market 32.

Tops Markets and Price Chopper/Market 32 have agreed to a merger announced Monday that will double the collective footprint between the super market chains in the northeast.

Scott Grimmett, Price Chopper/Market 32’s president and CEO, will be CEO of and serve on the board of directors of the new parent company, which will oversee the operations of nearly 300 Price Chopper, Market 32, Market Bistro and Tops Markets stores and collectively employ more than 30,000 teammates. Frank Curci, Tops Markets chairman and CEO, will serve on the board of directors of the new parent company and as a consultant to assist in the transition.

Blaine Bringhurst, Price Chopper/Market 32’s executive vice president of merchandising, marketing and store operations, will lead the Price Chopper/Market 32 business. John Persons, Tops Markets president and chief operating officer, will lead the Tops Markets business.

Tops will continue to operate locally under the Tops name, a spokeswoman told the Buffalo News.

Tops locations in Chautauqua County include: Dunkirk-Fredonia, two in Jamestown, Falconer, Frewsburg, Westfield, Mayville and Silver Creek. There are also a handful of locations in Warren County in Pennsylvania.

The new parent company will be headquartered in Schenectady. The Price Chopper/Market 32 and Tops Markets businesses will retain main offices in Schenectady and Williamsville and will continue to be managed locally by their respective leaders.

“This merger marks a major step forward and collectively elevates our ability to compete on every level,” Grimmett said. “It leverages increased value for our customers; advances shared opportunities for innovation; fortifies the depth of our workforce, community and trade partnerships; and ultimately accelerates our capacity to deliver a distinctively modern and convenient shopping experience. Given the vital role that supermarkets and their workforces play in our communities, particularly this past year, I am excited to lead the parent company of these two historic grocery retailers.”

“We have long believed that this merger makes sense both strategically and based on the similar ways in which we each put customers first, go to market and treat our people,” added Curci. “We look forward to working closely with the Price Chopper/Market 32 team and together becoming an even stronger competitor with more scale, as we continue serving our customers and communities.”

With formative roots dating back to the 1920s, both Tops Markets and Price Chopper/Market 32 have grown exponentially over the last century, building and acquiring stores across upstate New York and throughout the northeast. The merged companies are committed to serving their markets across the northeast.

“Tops has always put serving customers and providing an exceptional shopping experience at the center of everything we do, and this merger is no different,” Persons said. “Our associates, who take pride in their work and recognize the importance of the role they play in taking care of customers and communities, will continue to be the backbone of our company.”

The transaction is expected to close in the coming months, subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Based in Schenectady, Price Chopper/Market 32 operates 130 Price Chopper and Market 32 grocery stores and one Market Bistro, employing 18,000 teammates in New York, Vermont, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. The American-owned company, founded by the Golub family in 1932, prides itself on longstanding traditions of innovative food merchandising, cutting edge brand development and store design, leadership in community service, and cooperative employee relations. For additional information, please visit www.pricechopper.com

Tops, based in Williamsville, operates 162 grocery stores in New York, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, including five that are run by franchisees. As the largest private, for-profit employer in Western New York, with more than 14,000 associates, the company is dedicated to providing sustainably sourced, high quality products, while helping its communities flourish via support for programs that eradicate hunger and disease, educate youth and reduce environmental waste and energy consumption. For more information, visit www.topsmarkets.com.

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