Ahold USA is the American arm of Netherlands-based Royal Ahold -- a grocery retailer with operations in Europe and the US. The subsidiary oversees about 775 supermarkets in 14 states -- from Massachusetts to Virginia -- and the District of Columbia. Ahold USA's four divisions include: Stop & Shop New England, Stop & Shop Metro New York, Giant-Landover, and Giant-Carlisle, each with its own support business. Its online grocery ordering and delivery service Peapod serves Giant Food and Stop & Shop customers in select markets. Ahold USA accounts for about 60% of its Dutch parent's group sales. After nearly a decade of retrenchment, Royal Ahold is growing again on both sides of the Atlantic.
Ahold USA is a leading grocery operator along the East Coast of the US. Of its four regional chains, Stop & Shop New England is the largest with 220 stores. Stop & Shop Metro -- with stores in New York, New Jersey, and southern Connecticut -- numbers about 185 locations. Giant Carlisle operates nearly 220 supermarkets under the banners Giant Food Stores and Martin's Food Markets. Giant Landover (aka Giant of Maryland) operates about 170 supermarkets in the Mid-Atlantic region. Each chain also operates fuel stations. Peapod is a leading US online grocer and works with the company's four divisions to provide Internet-based home shopping and grocery delivery and pickup.
Ahold USA's stores rang up $26 billion in sales in 2012, a 3% increase vs. 2011. Same-store sales (excluding gasoline) increased by 0.5%. Amid challenging market conditions, all four Ahold USA divisions posted market share gains in the supermarket channel. Sales growth resulted from successful promotions, as well as acquired and new stores.
In 2012 Ahold USA accounted for 61% of its Dutch parent company's sales and contributed about 55% of its operating income.
The company recently reorganized its US and European operations to position them for growth. The reorganization, which separated support functions from retail store operations, has led to expansion in the US via acquisitions and organic growth. In 2012 the company remodeled, expanded, relocated or rebuilt 64 stores as part of its ongoing effort to keep its store base up to date. Total investments at Ahold USA amounted to about 3% of sales.
Mergers and Acquisitions
Ahold USA's Giant-Carlisle chain acquired 15 stores in the Philadelphia area from Safeway-owned Genuardis for $106 million. The deal, which closed in July 2012, followed the purchase of a pair of Genuardi's stores in late 2010 and a larger acquisition of 25 family-owned Ukrop's Super Markets in Virginia earlier in the year.
The Ukrop's purchase reversed years of paring down operations. Divestments included the TOPS Markets, BI-LO, and Bruno's grocery store chains in the US. Royal Ahold also sold its U.S. Foodservice business following a massive accounting scandal at the company.
Ahold USA is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Netherlands-based Royal Ahold.