Safeway May Shed Gift-Card Unit

Los Angeles Safeway Inc. CEO Steve Burd said he might sell or “monetize” part of its Blackhawk Network gift-card unit because it was undervalued, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times.

Blackhawk sells gift cards from retailers including Nordstrom Inc. and Starbucks Corp. at more than 63,000 kiosks in Safeway and other grocery stores. Burd discussed selling the unit at a Bear Stearns Cos. conference in New York City.

“We are determined to get the market to appreciate the underlying value of Blackhawk,” Burd said. “If at some point we feel frustrated in that the market’s not valuing that, then there would be an effort to monetize a piece of that so that we could get that appreciation.”

Burd declined to give a timeline for a decision.