US-based retailing company Supervalu has agreed to acquire Associated Grocers of Florida in a $180m deal.

A definitive merger agreement to this effect has been signed by both the companies.

With this acquisition, Supervalu will expand its operations into a new region of Florida.

Supervalu president and chief executive officer Mark Gross said: “Associated Grocers represents a great opportunity for us to further expand our wholesale business into another important region.

“We believe Supervalu is uniquely positioned to be the supplier of choice across the grocery industry, and this acquisition is another example of how we’re delivering on our growth strategy.”

The agreed transaction is also expected to bring Supervalu’s products and services to Associated Grocers’ customer base in South Florida, the Caribbean and other international markets.

“This acquisition is another example of how we’re delivering on our growth strategy.”

Associated Grocers is a retailer-owned cooperative that is involved in the distribution of grocery and general merchandise to independent retailers, primarily in South Florida, the Caribbean, Central and South America, as well as Asia.

Associated Grocers’ customer base of conventional, speciality and ethnic stores includes a mix of multi-cultural independent grocers.

Subject to Associated Grocers’ shareholders’ approval and other customary closing conditions, the acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of this year.

Supervalu has also signed a long-term supply agreement with Associated Grocers’ largest customer that will go into effect upon the closing of the transaction.

With close to 31,000 employees, Supervalu operates 3,337 stores across the US.