Save-On coming to Sidney

Overwaitea Food Group struck deal with Sobeys last week

Sidney’s Safeway store will be replaced by a Save-On-Foods store

After over forty years as a Beacon Avenue fixture, Sidney’s Safeway grocery store will soon become a Save-On-Foods after a deal was struck between Overwaitea Food Group and Sobeys last week.

The Overwaitea Food Group purchased four Safeway stores in Greater Victoria previously owned by Sobeys in the deal announced last Thursday.

“We are thrilled to be able to welcome these stores, along with their existing team members and customers to our group,” said Overwaitea president Darrell Jones in a statement.

“As a local grocer our philosophy is to tailor our stores and the mix in those stores to suit the needs of our customers and their communities.”

Stores at Fort and Foul Bay roads in Victoria, as well as stores at Tillicum, University Heights and in Sidney will transition to Save-On-Foods locations sometime between mid-March and the end of April, said Julie Dickson, Overwaitea spokesperson.

“We start to take possession in mid-March and take two or three stores a week over about a six-week period,” she said.

In June, Sobeys, which operates Thrifty Foods, announced it was buying 213 grocery stores, 10 liquor stores, four distribution centres and 12 manufacturing centres that make up Canada Safeway, in a $5.8-billion deal. The deal triggered a sell-off order in October from the Canadian Competition Bureau to sell 23 Safeway locations.

Overwaitea is also purchasing 15 other store locations in B.C. and Alberta, 14 of which will become Save-on-Foods and one location will become Cooper’s Foods.

The move affects about 400 unionized employees in the Capital Region.

“We’ve let the team members and store managers know that all pay and benefits they currently have under their contracts will remain in place,” said Jones.

Safeway locations in Port Alberni, Ladysmith and Duncan, and a Thrifty Foods in Nanaimo are also part of the sale, meaning Safeway will vanish from Vancouver Island altogether.

“The face of retail food is really changing dramatically in B.C., and it’s a bit disappointing to see the Safeway banner disappear from the Island, but we’ll roll with it,” said Andy Neufeld, communications director for United Food and Commercial Workers 1518, which represents both Safeway and Save-on-Foods employees.

Neufeld said new employee contracts will be “virtually identical” to the current agreements, and that all benefits and pensions will remain in place for existing employees.

“The important thing for Safeway members is they won’t go backwards under a new contract,” he said. “We are really delighted Overwaitea has stepped up and taken over these stores.”

— with files from Edward Hill and Daniel Palmer

 

 

Just Posted

Victoria airport nearing billion-dollar mark in economic impact

Airport has nearly doubled its passengers and its impact on the economy since 2005

More buoys allowed for Brentwood Bay

Proposed number rises from 40 to 60

Victoria airport reaches nearly two million passengers in 2017

This year expected to see additional growth

Victoria a hot spot for millennials: new study

City ranks No. 2 for generation of Canadians seeking work-life balance

Peninsula speed skating duo aiming for the national stage

Pair opted to train in long track skating this season for the first time

Sidney’s Salish Sea aquarium to close for maintenance

First extended closure for the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea since it opened in 2009

Butchart Gardens is hiring now and paying more

Wages start at $15, job fair Feb. 20

Cash still needed for Stelly’s Cross Path

MLA Olsen wants more specifics first

Injured parachutist wants stolen backpack back

Bag contained important video files of 2017 parachuting incident

All the colours of the rainbow, in a cloud

Rare phenomenon spotted at Mount Washington

LIVE: Solitary confinement in Canadian prisons unconstitutional: B.C. Supreme Court

Associations argued that solitary confinement was inhuman

1 in 4 B.C. consumers unable to pay bills, debt repayment: poll

Since interest rates first rose in July, poll suggests households across B.C. have had to tighten budget

SOGI rally disrupts school board meeting, but business carries on

Chilliwack school board makes statement in support of B.C.-wide gender identity teaching resource

B.C. husband and wife honoured for saving each other’s lives

Couple presented with Vital Link Awards for quick use of CPR

Most Read