"Combine and conquer" is the motto at Southeastern Grocers (formerly BI-LO Holding). The parent company for three supermarket chains boasts more than 750 stores across seven southeastern states. It operates some 180 BI-LO and Super BI-LO grocery stores in the Carolinas and Georgia; about 520 combination food and drug stores in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Mississippi under the
and Winn-Dixie Marketplace banners; and more than 50 grocery stores (two dozen with pharmacies) in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina under the Harveys name. BI-LO Holding was formed in 2012 when BI-LO's owner, Dallas-based
Lone Star Holdings
, acquired Winn-Dixie for about $560 million and merged the two companies; it became Southeastern Grocers in 2015.
Florida is the company's largest market, home to more than 400 of its stores, followed by South Carolina and Georgia. The regional grocery chain also has stores in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and North Carolina.
The strategy behind the merger of BI-LO and Winn-Dixie was to realize efficiencies from the combined operations of the two chains, although BI-LO and Winn-Dixie continue to operate under their own banners. However, functions, including supply chain, human resources, and store support, were combined.
Mergers and Acquisitions
In June 2014 the company completed the acquisition of substantially all the stores in the
, Harveys, and Reid's supermarket chains from Delhaize for $246 million in cash. As part of the acquisition deal, the company will add to its southeastern US holdings with 72 Sweetbay stores, leases for 10 prior Sweetbay locations, 72 Harveys stores, and 11 Reid's stores. (The Sweetbay stores will be converted to the Winn-Dixie banner, creating a more formidable rival to market leader Publix, which Winn-Dixie has long trailed.)
The March 2012 buyout of Winn-Dixie by
and its merger with BI-LO, joined two of the South's mainstay regional supermarket chains and expanded their scale with no geographic overlap. Post-merger, BI-LO Holding moved its headquarters to Jacksonville, home of Winn-Dixie. Jacksonville is centrally located to serve BI-LO's eight-state operating area.