Tops to sell seven stores in settlement with FTC

New York City Tops Markets has agreed to sell a supermarket in Lockport, N.Y., and six others in central New York and Pennsylvania to settle antitrust issues arising from its acquisition of 79 former Penn Traffic supermarkets, according to BuffaloNews.com.

The settlement with the Federal Trade Commission, announced Wednesday, would resolve claims by federal antitrust officials that Tops’ ownership of those stores would limit competition and drive up grocery prices.

The settlement, approved unanimously by the FTC, will further reduce the number of stores that Tops acquired in the Penn Traffic purchase, leaving Tops with only about three of every five outlets obtained under the $85 million deal.

Of the 79 stores purchased in January, Tops already has closed or sold 24. Selling the seven stores covered by the FTC settlement would leave Tops with 48 stores from the Penn Traffic deal.