Kroger is getting out of the convenience store business.
The grocery chain has sold its portfolio of convenience store holdings, which include Kwik Shop, Loaf ‘N Jug, Turkey Hill, and Tom Thumb, to the U.K.’s EG Group for $2.15 billion.
Over 700 stores and 11,000 employees will be affected by the sale. The stores are located in 18 states throughout the country and, in 2016, generated revenues of $4 billion, according to a statement from Kroger.
Kroger (KR) has been shopping the sale since last October when it announced a review of its assets and determined the convenience store business wasn’t meeting its full potential. It concluded the convenience stores would perform better with an owner dedicated to that market.
The transaction is scheduled to close by the end of May. Kroger says it plans to use the money from the sale to repurchase shares and lower its debt. The company’s supermarket fuel centers and Turkey Hill Dairy operations were not included in the sale.