Stop & Shop buys King Kullen

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The King Kullen in Garden City Park. (Photo courtesy of Google Images)

King Kullen, an iconic supermarket chain active on Long Island since the 1930s, will be purchased by regional competitor Stop & Shop.

Announced in a news release from Stop & Shop on Friday, the deal will give the company all of King Kullen’s 32 stores, five Wild by Nature natural food stores and the corporate offices in Bethpage. A price for the deal was not disclosed.

“In 1930, Michael J. Cullen opened the first King Kullen and ushered in the era of the great American supermarket,” Brian Cullen, co-president of King Kullen, said in the release. “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.”

Two King Kullen locations operate in the Town of North Hempstead, one at 2305 Jericho Turnpike in Garden City Park and the other at 1430 Northern Blvd. in Manhasset.

Based in Quincy, Massachusetts, Stop & Shop is an Ahold Delhaize USA Company and employs more than 61,000 people and operates over 400 stores throughout the Northeast.

“King Kullen is a well-respected grocery chain in the Long Island market that has an 88-year tradition of excellent customer service,” Stop & Shop President Mark McGowan said in the release. “We look forward to bringing our quality, selection and value to more communities in Nassau and Suffolk Counties.”

The deal is expected to close later this financial quarter, according to Stop & Shop officials.

The status of King Kullen stores’ future operations as a result of the deal has not been determined. The King Kullen on Jericho Turnpike is located only 2.4 miles from a Stop & Shop store on Hillside Avenue.

A spokesperson for Stop & Shop said that the company will be evaluating the stores and making those decisions in the near future.

The Smithsonian Institute acknowledges King Kullen as America’s first supermarket, as it was the first to fulfill all five criteria that define the modern supermarket: separate departments, self-service, discount pricing, chain marketing and volume dealing, according to King Kullen’s website.

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