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Ahold announces agreement to buy Alliant

Royal Ahold, Zaandam, The Netherlands, has announced an agreement through its wholly-owned subsidiary, U.S. Foodservice (USF), Columbia, MD, to acquire all outstanding shares of Alliant Exchange, Inc., parent of Alliant Foodservice, Inc., Deerfield, IL. The transaction will involve a total consideration of $2.2 billion, including assumption of $750 million in debt. The deal is expected to close by the first quarter of 2002, pending regulatory approval.

The planned acquisition?leaked by the Wall Street Journal last week?will add 17 large U.S. cities to current geography, giving USF access to approximately 95 percent of the U.S. population. Synergies and cost savings in the year following closing are anticipated at $70 million, increasing to $120 million in the third year of full operation.

"Alliant's position in the healthcare and lodging sectors and its advanced distribution network strategy complements the place U.S. Foodservice holds in institutional and restaurant distribution," comments Jim Miller, USF president and ceo and member of the Ahold corporate executive board. "By expanding our geographic scope, we should become a key player in 15 new states. Furthermore, Alliant's business-to-business e-commerce platform complements other ongoing initiatives within U.S. Foodservice."

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