Fred Meyer Inc. shareholders approved the acquisition of two West Coast grocery chains in a $4.8 billion deal that will create the nation's fourth-largest supermarket operation.
The deals are expected to close next week.Fred Meyer, based in Portland, plans to purchase Seattle-based Quality Food Centers for $1.7 billion and Food 4 Less Holdings, Inc. of Los Angeles for $3.1 billion.
Food 4 Less Holdings is the parent company of Ralphs Grocery, Inc., with 264 stores, and Food 4 Less, with 80 stores.
Shareholders for QFC, which operates 145 stores, met Friday to vote on the deal. Fred Meyer shareholders gave their approval on Thursday. And Food 4 Less, which is privately held, approved it last week.
The acquisitions give Fred Meyer and its subsidiaries 821 stores with estimated 1997 revenue of $14.9 billion.
The expanded Fred Meyer now is tied with Albertson's as the nation's fourth-largest supermarket chain.