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Roundy's sole bidder for Rainbow Foods stores

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- Roundy's Inc., the Wisconsin grocery store company, has emerged the sole bidder for 31 Rainbow Foods stores owned by Fleming Companies Inc., which has filed for bankruptcy.

The $121.5 million bid was expected to be certified by a bankruptcy court judge in Wilmington, Del., today.

The news comes after a day of wrangling among lawyers for Roundy's and rival Miner's Inc., a Duluth-area grocer that made a late attempt to bid for Rainbow.

Fleming filed for bankruptcy on April 1 and immediately announced plans to sell the Rainbow chain. Roundy's, which operates stores under the Pick 'n Save and Copps Food Center names, quickly emerged as the leading bidder.

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Although Fleming only accepted Roundy's bid, Miner's officials said they may object to the proceedings in bankruptcy court today.

Roundy's is plotting dramatic changes for Rainbow, which in recent years has slipped to the No. 2 position among Twin Cities groceries behind Cub Foods.

Roundy's has a history of selling private-label merchandise, a practice dating back to the sale of salt in 1922.

Twelve Rainbow stores not included in the sale either have been closed or are slated to close June 10.

Four stores -- in Blaine, Wausau, Wis. and two in Rochester -- closed last weekend. And eight stores that will be closed next week include those in: Brooklyn Park, Brooklyn Center, Plymouth, Oak Park Heights, Albert Lea, Faribault, Mankato and St. Cloud.

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