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Shareholders Approve Sale of Roundy's

MILWAUKEE - The $750 million sale of Roundy's Inc. to a Chicago investment firm received shareholder approval Tuesday, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Pewaukee, Wisc.-based Roundy's, which operates 60 Pick 'n Save and Copps supermarkets, will be owned mainly by investment funds controlled by Willis Stein & Partners.

New information about the sale says that Willis Stein is paying $750 million for Roundy's, the newspaper reports. The purchase price would be reduced by the assumption of Roundy's outstanding debt once the company's sale is final, an offering memorandum says. That debt assumption, along with other factors, would adjust the purchase price to about $529.5 million.

Once the sale is final, 10 percent to 12 percent of Roundy's will be owned by its senior management. Robert Mariano, the new chairman, CEO and president, will own about 4 percent of the company, and Darren Karst, the new executive vice president and chief financial officer, will own about 2 percent, the memorandum says.

Roundy's currently is a cooperative, owned by its senior management and 99 grocery stores that are stockholders and customers of the chain.

The memorandum also outlines Roundy's strategy for growth. The company believes it can continue to improve profit margins by shifting its product mix to more expensive perishable and specialty products; centralizing its purchase functions to gain more leverage with suppliers, and increasing its sales of "private label" items, such as Roundy's brand food products.

Roundy's also plans to add new supermarkets in Wisconsin, particularly with the Pick 'n Save chain, according to the newspaper.
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