Food retailer Ahold Delhaize plans to close an unspecified number of underperforming Stop & Shop grocery stores in the US during 2024, Reuters has reported. 

The retailer has not yet disclosed the exact number of stores involved.

Stop & Shop, which operates 400 stores in the US, is a key brand for Ahold Delhaize. 

The US market accounts for more than half of its revenue, with sales there amounting to €54.54bn in 2023.  

During a call with analysts, Ahold Delhaize US CEO JJ Fleeman was quoted as saying: “Stop & Shop has already evaluated its overall portfolio and will make difficult decisions to close underperforming stores to create a healthy store base for the long term.”  

The announcement comes as Ahold Delhaize unveiled its Growing Together strategy at its 2024 Strategy Day, which outlined the company’s ambitions up to 2028.  

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The company will take decisive actions to secure a stable future for Stop & Shop.  

It plans to focus on organic store growth in the US, particularly through the expansion of its Food Lion and Hannaford brands. 

JJ Fleeman went on: “Over the next several years, we will strengthen the market position for each of our brands, including the revitalisation of Stop & Shop.  

“We will improve value for customers through price investments and enhance the customer experience through 1,000 targeted remodels and new stores. We will lead, grow and differentiate in own brands, build digital relationships through more personalised value and improve operational efficiency at every level.” 

The Growing Together strategy also revealed Ahold Delhaize’s plan for its European operation. 

The retailer will capitalise on its strong presence in the Benelux region and seek growth opportunities in Central and Southeastern Europe, including through acquisitions such as Profi in Romania and organic store openings. 

Ahold Delhaize also aims to increase omnichannel loyalty sales penetration to more than 80% by 2028.  

In November 2023, the US subsidiary of Ahold Delhaize agreed to divest its FreshDirect business to grocery delivery service provider Getir.