Winn-Dixie Unit to Sell Bahamas Operation to Local Firm

JACKSONVILLE -- Bankrupt Winn-Dixie Stores Inc. said it is selling 12 supermarkets it operates in the Bahamas -- 9 under the City Markets banner and 3 under the Winn-Dixie banner -- for approximately $50 million. All 12 stores are expected to remain open following completion of the transaction.

A wholly-owned subsidiary of Winn-Dixie, W-D (Bahamas) Ltd. reached a agreement to sell its majority stake in Bahamas Supermarkets Limited ("BSL") to a local Bahamian company, BK Foods, Ltd. BSL owns the 12 Bahamian supermarkets operated under the City Markets and Winn-Dixie banners. The agreement provides an opportunity for the submission of higher or better offers through an auction to be held at a later date, the company said.

In a statement, Peter Lynch, Winn-Dixie's president and c.e.o., said, "Although the 12 stores in the Bahamas are profitable, they are not a core business for us. The additional liquidity generated from this sale will help Winn-Dixie support the remodeling of existing stores and development of new stores in our core U.S. markets."

W-D (Bahamas) owns approximately 78 percent of the common stock of BSL, while the other 22 percent of BSL's common stock will remain publicly traded in the Bahamas.

Upon completion of this transaction, Winn-Dixie will be down to 538 stores in Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, and Mississippi (including 10 that are temporarily closed as a result of Hurricane Katrina).
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