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Ahold reported to be in 'advanced talks' to buy Alliant Foodservice

The Wall Street Journal has reported that Royal Ahold, Zandaam, The Netherlands, is in "advanced talks" to acquire $6.6-billion Alliant Foodservice, Deerfield, IL, for about $1.5 billion in cash, plus the assumption of about $700 million in debt, according to people "familiar with the matter." Ahold is the parent of U.S. Foodservice, Columbia, MD, the nation's second largest broadliner, ringing up some $12 billion in annual sales.

An Alliant spokeswoman disclaimed any knowledge and an Ahold spokesman told the WSJ that, "if there is an agreement between two parties and ink on the paper, and if that would be the case, we would announce it."

If the acquisition is made and Ahold takes on the entire $6.6-billion company, the Dutch food conglomerate's U.S. foodservice operations would amount to approximately $19 billion in annual business, some $3 billion short of Sysco Corp., Houston, the nation?s largest broadliner at approximately $22 billion in volume.

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