Harris Teeter shareholders have approved a plan for Kroger to acquire the Matthews-based grocery chain. Harris Teeter officials said in a statement that 83 percent of the votes cast by shareholders were in favor of the $2.5 billion merger agreement. The acquisition by Ohio-based Kroger still has to be approved by federal regulators.
Kroger is the nation's largest grocery chain with more than 2,400 stores. Company officials said they want to maintain the branding that the more than 200 Harris Teeter stores now have even after the deal is finalized. Harris Teeter's success in high-growth areas such as Charlotte and Washington, D.C. was very attractive to Kroger..as was the popularity of the store's in-house brands.
Harris Teeter shareholders will get nearly 50 dollars for each share they own as part of the deal. Kroger officials say they hope to have the merger done by the end of the year.