Tag Archives: haggen

Port Orchard Safeway will reopen April 27

0729_KSLO_bethel-copySafeway is hiring 75 employees in Port Orchard as it prepares to reopen its Bethel Road store on April 27, company spokeswoman Tairsa Worman said.

The store was previously operated by Safeway but was acquired by Haggen in early 2015. Haggen declared bankruptcy last fall and closed the Port Orchard location Dec. 5. Albertsons bought the store back from Haggen and returned it to the Safeway banner.

The company is hiring full- and part-time workers for all areas of the store, including deli, meat, customer service, bakery and produce, according to a news release.

Benefits for eligible employees include health care, paid vacation and discounts at Safeway and Albertsons.

Worman said priority is being given to former employees of the store.

News of the Port Orchard store opening was welcomed by UFCW 21, which represents local grocery workers.

“We are looking forward to having this store re-open,” UFCW 21 spokesman Tom Geiger said. “Once store opens, we will get a list of employees from the employer and then come in and sign up members to make sure workers there get all the benefits of having a union grocery job.”

Safeway is holding open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday at the store, at 3355 Bethel Rd. SE. Job seekers can also apply at www.careersatsafeway.com.

Report: Albertsons buying more Haggen stores, but not in Kitsap

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Update: Haggen confirmed the deal in a news release Friday.

Albertsons is preparing to gobble up more stores from Haggen, but not the shuttered locations in Siverdale or East Bremerton.

According to reports from several news sources, the grocery giant is finalizing a deal to acquire Haggen’s remaining “core stores,” which include the original Haggen stores in Whatcom County. (The Oregonian posted a full list.)

haggans08_15364113_ver1.0_640_480The news was attributed to a grocery workers union and was not confirmed by Haggen, Albertsons, or the Federal Trade Commission.

The list of stores being sold does not include former Haggen locations in Silverdale or East Bremerton, which were designated as “non-core stores.”

Haggen already sold off most its non-core stores — including one in Port Orchard — during bankruptcy auctions last fall. The stores in Silverdale and East Bremerton didn’t sell. Both closed in late November and remain empty.

Haggen has not responded to my requests for information about plans for its discarded Kitsap locations.

The grocer owns the property off Wheaton Way in East Bremerton. It leased the Bucklin Hill Road space in Silverdale from a real estate investment group.

If Albertsons does buy Haggen’s core business, it will add another twist to an already improbable retail saga.

A year ago Haggen, a small, Bellingham-based chain, acquired 146 stores from Albertsons and Safeway as the mega grocers finalized a merger agreement. The FTC required the sale to prevent the combined Albertsons/Safeway chain from gaining monopolies in some markets.

hagganlead_15364107_ver1.0_640_480Included in the divestiture were Albertsons stores in Silverdale and East Bremerton, and a Safeway in Port Orchard.

Haggen’s rapid expansion scheme proved devastating. The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September.

Albertsons bought back many of its old stores from Haggen last fall, including the Port Orchard location, which will reopen as a Safeway sometime this year (an opening date has not been released).

Now Albertsons is poised to absorb the remainder of Haggen’s crumbling empire.

Gig Harbor Safeway reopens Feb. 3; no date for Port Orchard store

The Gig Harbor Safeway that became a Haggen will become a Safeway again on Feb. 3.

But Safeway spokeswoman Sara Osborne said no reopening date has been announced for the vacant Safeway-turned-Haggen in Port Orchard, also set to return to the Safeway fold.

Safeway parent company Albertsons LLC. bought back both stores from Haggen in a bankruptcy auction last fall.

Haggen stores in Silverdale and East Bremerton were not purchased during those auctions and remain empty. The Bucklin Hill Road and Wheaton Way locations were previously operated by Alberstons.

The Port Orchard Haggen is also closed

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Haggen has left the county.

The grocery chain’s store in the Port Orchard Bethel Junction shopping center was closed and cleaned out last week. Haggen shuttered its stores in East Bremerton and Silverdale at the end of November.

PO.haggen.2I haven’t heard exactly when the Port Orchard location shut down. If you happen to know, please drop a comment below.

Unlike the Bremerton and Silverdale Haggens, the Port Orchard store already has a new owner in place.

Albertsons LLC. bought the location in a bankruptcy auction last month and plans to return it to the Safeway brand. A timeline for the reopening has not been announced.

The three Kitsap County stores were among 146 Haggen acquired from Albertsons and Safeway early this year, as the two mega-grocers completed a merger.

The East Bremerton and Silverdale stores were previously operated by Albertsons. The Port Orchard store was a Safeway.

Haggen’s bold expansion ultimately flopped. The company filed for bankruptcy reorganization in September and held auctions to begin selling off assets.

The Bellingham Herald reports Haggen will try to sell the remainder of its stores, including its original Whatcom County locations, at an auction scheduled for February.

Haggen was in business in Kitsap for less than 9 months:

Albertsons bids on Port Orchard Haggen

Haggans01_15364108_ver1.0_640_480Haggen stores in Port Orchard and Gig Harbor could be bought back by Albertsons, according to court documents.

Haggen is auctioning off dozens of stores this week as part of a bankruptcy reorganization, and Albertsons has emerged as a bidder.

Documents filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware Friday show Albertsons entered bids for 12 stores in Washington, including former Safeway stores in Port Orchard and Gig Harbor.

Albertsons submitted a baseline bid of $200,000 for the store in Port Orchard, and $500,000 for Gig Harbor.

No baseline bids were entered for Haggen stores in East Bremerton or Silverdale, which were formerly Albertsons.

Eighteen Washington Haggen stores will be auctioned Wednesday, according to documents. A hearing will be held Nov. 24 to review the auction results.

Albertsons is bidding on stores it was forced to divest to meet antitrust requirements as it completed a merger with Safeway this year.

Haggen scooped up 146 of those stores, including three in Kitsap County and one in Gig Harbor. The Bellingham-based grocery chain filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in September and later announced it would sell or close all but 37 “core stores.”

Haggen stores in Kitsap are slated to close by the end of November and have begun to liquidate inventory. Many Haggen employees have already been rehired at Albertsons and Safeway stores, with permission from the Federal Trade Commission.

Supermarket News and the Seattle Times have more on the Haggen auctions this week. You can read all of my Haggen blog posts here.

UPDATE: Supermarket News reported Tuesday that Haggen will auction off all its stores. This includes the “core stores” Haggen initially said it would keep, and the chain’s original stores in the Bellingham area.

Report: Haggen plans to close Kitsap stores

haggenClick here for our story on the proposed Haggen store closures. 

Update: Citing bankruptcy court documents, the Bellingham Herald reports Haggen plans to close stores in East Bremerton, Gig Harbor and Silverdale, in addition to the Port Orchard store.

The Seattle Times has a map of proposed store closures here. The closure plan requires court approval.

Haggen plans to close most of its newly-acquired stores and regroup around 37 “core stores” in the Northwest, according to a Thursday news release.

The Seattle Times reports Haggen has selected about 14 Washington stores for closure, including the former Safeway in Port Orchard. Haggen also operates former Albertsons stores in Silverdale and East Bremerton.

In an email, a Haggen representative said a full list of stores slated for closure would be released at 5 p.m. Thursday.

Affected employees will be given 60-day notice before their stores are closed, according to the release.

The reorganization is part of an ongoing bankruptcy for the Bellingham-based grocer. Haggen acquired 146 former Albertsons and Safeway locations across the west early this year but struggled to compete in some of its new markets.

The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Sept. 9.

If you’re a Haggen employee and want to share your perspective on the situation, please contact me at tad.sooter@kitsapsun.com or 360-475-3783.

The full news release is posted below: Continue reading

Your weekly update on the Haggen saga

Haggen2_15364115_ver1.0_640_480Nary a day passes without some fresh revelation on the travails of Haggen, the Bellingham grocer that grew from 18 locations to 164 by gobbling up stores divested in the Albertsons/Safeway merger.

To recap, Haggen filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last week. Haggen also sued Albertsons for $1 billion, claiming the grocery giant sabotaged its expansion. Haggen operates three Kitsap County stores in Bremerton, Port Orchard and Silverdale.

Business reporters have been sifting through the bankruptcy filings to gain some insight into the future of the troubled grocer. Here are some recent Haggen headlines:

  • Despite the lawsuit, the Seattle Times reports Haggen is seeking approval for Albertsons to hire back employees from the stores it divested. There was a one-year ban on Albertsons hiring employees from its former stores.

Union responds to Haggen bankruptcy

Haggans01_15364108_ver1.0_640_480A deal that promised to put tiny grocery chain Haggen on the fast track to becoming a regional power has instead resulted in a train wreck.

The Bellingham-based grocer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Tuesday, saying it would sell off assets and reorganize around its profitable stores.

The move came after Haggen announced it would close or sell 27 of the 146 stores it acquired from Albertsons and Safeway (the closures didn’t include any of the three Kitsap County Haggen stores). Haggen also sued Albertsons for $1 billion claiming the grocery giant sabotaged Haggen’s expansion effort.

All of this leaves Haggen’s roughly 11,000 employees in an uncertain position. It’s likely more stores will be sold off as part of the reorganization.

Hours have been cut at some Puget Sound stores, the Seattle Times reported. The company owes employees $10 million in unpaid salaries, accrued wages and overtime pay, according to the Puget Sound Business Journal.

According to statements circulated Thursday by employee union UFCW 21, Haggen workers found out about the bankruptcy filing from news reports.

Below are two statements from UFCW 21 responding to the Haggen bankruptcy. The first was distributed to the media, the second was sent to employees by union president Todd Crosby:

“For years, hard-working men and women in grocery stores at Haggen’s have shown their commitment to their job, their co-workers, the community, and this union family.  

“As difficult as this bankruptcy process is, our message to Haggen is simple – we expect Haggen to do what is right by their hard-working employees and their families. Haggen’s must never forget that these incredible men and women who do the work are the heart and soul of their stores. 

“They are not numbers, but real people whose work and dedication should be honored. Looking ahead, our union family will do everything in our power to protect the livelihoods of every member who is and has been dedicated to meeting the needs of every Haggen’s customer.”

And the message from Crosby:  Continue reading

Haggen closing stores, but not in Kitsap

haggenAfter a massive expansion, Haggen is shrinking again.

The Bellingham-based grocery chain announced it will close or sell 27 of the 146 stores it recently acquired from Safeway and Albertsons.

Only one of the stores slated for closure — Haggen’s Spanaway location — is in Washington.

Haggen took over Albertsons stores in Silverdale and East Bremerton, and a Safeway store in Port Orchard this year, entering the Kitsap market for the first time.

Media reports indicate Haggen’s rapid expansion has run into turbulence. Stores laid off employees in California (LA Times story) and cut hours in the Puget Sound region (Seattle Times story).

What’s been your experience with Haggen stores in Kitsap so far?

East Bremerton Haggen opening May 28

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The Albertsons in East Bremerton will become a Haggen Northwest Fresh store a week from now.

The Wheaton Way Albertsons is scheduled to close May 26 for conversion, and reopen May 28 under the Haggen banner.

Here’s the schedule provided by Haggen:

Bremerton- Albertsons Store at 2900 Wheaton Way

  •  6:00 pm, Tuesday, May 26 – Store closes
  • 12:01 am, Wednesday, May 27- Haggen takes ownership of the store
  •  4:00 pm*, Thursday, May 28 – Store opens as Haggen (*Opening time is tentative)
  • NOTE: The pharmacy will remain open during the conversion starting late morning May 27

Two other Kitsap grocery stores have already converted to Haggen. A Silverdale Albertsons and Port Orchard Safeway made the change in March.

Bellingham-based Haggen acquired 146 Albertsons and Safeway stores this spring as part of a divestiture required for the merger of the two grocery titans.

You can read all my posts about Haggen’s arrival in Kitsap here. Haggen posted a FAQ about store conversions.