Spartan Stores Expands Credit Facility to $225M

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.--Having determined getting bought was not in the cards, Spartan Stores here said yesterday it expanded its existing senior secured credit facility to $225 million from $215 million, and its term has been extended to seven years from five years.

The amended agreement provides added financial flexibility for dividend payments and acquisitions, among other things, said Spartan Stores. The company earlier this year completed a strategic review process in which it looked at various options including a possible sale or possible acquisition of a group of retail stores, and decided to stay independent and continue a plan to grow retail and distribution sales.

Current availability under the amended agreement increases by approximately $10 million. Additionally, a $15 million Term B loan is included as part of the total $225 million credit facility, which may be drawn upon at Spartan's option.

"We are very pleased to have secured even more favorable terms for our financing agreement," Craig C. Sturken, Spartan Stores' chairman, president and c.e.o. said in a statement. "We have been able to amend our lending agreement because of our continuously improving financial condition and sustainable strength of our financial performance. The amendment demonstrates the continued confidence our lenders have in our business plans."

Spartan Stores, with warehouse facilities in Grand Rapids and Plymouth, Mich., distributes more than 40,000 private-label and national brand products to more than 350 independent grocery stores in Michigan, Indiana and Ohio. The company also owns and operates 54 retail supermarkets and 19 deep-discount food and drug stores in Michigan and Ohio, including Family Fare Supermarkets, Glen's Markets, and The Pharm.

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