Long Island is divided - you are either a shopper at Stop & Shop or King Kullen. Well, Ahold Delhaize's Stop & Shop division just acquired enough King Kullen stores to grow it's presence on Long Island.
The deal includes 32 of King Kullen supermarkets, 5 Wild by Nature food stores and use of its corporate offices in Bethpage. This deal clearly puts Stop & Shop in the lead in the super market battle on Long Island. The acquisition is expected to close during the first quarter of 2019.
King Kullen has now declined in market share. The store calls itself “America’s first supermarket,” and was the first to do a self-service store concept. The company was founded in Queens, NY in 1930 by Michael Cullen. The company is still run by his family with Brian Cullen and J.Donald Kennedy serving as co-presidents.
“King Kullen is a well-respected grocery chain in the Long Island market that has an 88-year tradition of excellent customer service,” Mark McGowan, president of Stop & Shop, said in a statement. “We look forward to bringing our quality, selection and value to more communities in Nassau and Suffolk counties.”
It is not clear whether Stop & Shop will preserve the King Kullen banner and branding or even keep the stores where they are. “We will evaluate the stores and make these decisions in the near future,” spokeswoman Jennifer Brogan said in an email to WGB.
“In 1930, Michael J. Cullen opened the first King Kullen and ushered in the era of the great American supermarket,” said Brian Cullen. “As a family-owned and -operated business, we are very proud of our heritage and extremely grateful to all of our associates and customers for their support over the years. We are confident the Stop & Shop brand will carry on our legacy of service in the region.”