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Smart & Final Takes Over Former Haggen Grocery Stores In San Diego

A Haggen grocery store sits empty on Lake Murray Blvd. in La Mesa, California...

Photo by Susan Murphy

Above: A Haggen grocery store sits empty on Lake Murray Blvd. in La Mesa, California on Sept. 28, 2015.

Smart & Final Stores Inc. announced today that it has received U.S. Bankruptcy Court approval to take over the leases of 32 Haggen locations in Central and Southern California, including 11 in San Diego County.

The $68 million deal is part of Haggen's divestment of properties it acquired after Albertsons and Vons merged. The rapid growth of Haggen was unpopular with consumers, however, and the grocer declared bankruptcy.

Smart & Final, Albertsons and Gelsons are splitting up the closed Haggen stores.

"We continue to see significant room for growth within our existing markets," said Smart & Final CEO David Hirz. "Through the acquisition of the Haggen stores, we will capture some of this opportunity. Our team looks forward to serving the communities of each new store."

The stores to become Smart & Final locations include:

— Carlsbad, 955 Carlsbad Village Drive;

— Chula Vista, 360 E. H St.;

— Coronado, 150 B Ave.;

— El Cajon, 13439 Camino Canada and 2800 Fletcher Parkway;

— La Mesa, 3681 Avocado Ave.;

— San Diego, 10740 Westview Parkway, 2235 University Ave. and 10633 Tierrasanta Blvd.;

— Santee, 9870 Magnolia Ave.; and

— San Ysidro, 350 W. San Ysidro Blvd.

Smart & Final said it planned to hire 5,000 new employees over the next four years to staff the 32 stores.

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