Albertsons to serve up dynamic consumer offer with Plated acquisition

Albertsons snaps up meal kit startup Plated

In the past year, Kroger and other grocery chains started to see dollar signs in the new industry and have started to offer their own meal delivery services.

This acquisition is Albertson latest example of meeting customers however and wherever they want to shop, said the grocers' CEO and chairman Bob Miller.

Albertsons Cos. acquired meal-kit delivery company Plated in the culmination of swift deal talks that were sparked by the Amazon-Whole Foods tie-up, said a person familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.

Albertsons has purchased meal kit company Plated, and the move could vault the retailer ahead in an area in which it had been lagging behind.

The price of the Albertsons deal was not disclosed.

"Plated tackles things from that premium, upscale, restaurant-quality meal idea, and that's something that when you look at the stores and you look at the offers that your traditional supermarkets. they're coming at it at a less sophisticated level", Sheehan said.

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Plated, which launched in 2012 and was featured on Shark Tank, distributes its food nationally and is considered one of America's five largest meal kit providers.

The acquisiton of Plated by Albertsons on Wednesday reverberated across retail as Albertsons successfully incorporated two key customer-capture elements into their business model - a personalized product selection coupled with a subscription option - and at the same time helped accelerate adoption of a trending meal kit service offering.

"As meal kits continue to gain traction in the marketplace, we believe the winning formula combines choice, flexibility, culinary expertise, and the ability for customers to buy across channels - all of which we are now singularly positioned to deliver in collaboration with Albertsons Cos.", said Hix.

Stock at Blue Apron jumped 2% during trading after hours after it had traded down during the day by over 5%.

After Blue Apron's tumultuous first weeks as a public company, some have questioned whether a meal-kit maker should exist as a standalone company, Bartashus said.

Albertsons' expansion into meal kits, which deliver fresh ingredients and recipes to subscribers, comes less than a month after Amazon.com Inc's (AMZN.O) entry into the grocery market with its acquisition of Whole Foods Market. So far, investors have been anxious about Blue Apron's scalability and massive marketing costs, but with a larger brand name behind it, those concerns should be somewhat satisfied. Apple sold a mere 1 billion iPhones in 10 years but a new breakthrough is expected to generate more than 27 billion devices in just 3 years, creating a $1.7 trillion market.

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