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Delhaize to spend $1.21 billion on new stores


Belgium -- Belgian supermarket operator Delhaize Group said Thursday it plans to spend $1.21 billion opening new stores and remodeling existing outlets.

According to a report by Wall Street Journal, Delhaize, which operates mainly under the U.S. Food Lion, Hannaford and Sweet Bay banners, is making the investments despite a fourth quarter same-store sales decline of 0.8%.

The retailer said it plans to spend the $1.21 billion this year to open new stores and remodel existing stores, resulting in an additional 100 to 110 stores. It added 68 stores in 2010. In the United States, it will expand its bottom-dollar food format, a discount format focused on competitive prices and a strong share of around 50% of private-label products.

In Delhaize's home market of Belgium, same-store sales grew 3.8%, making it the strongest quarter in seven years, despite adverse weather conditions.

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