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Wilson Farms Deal Closes

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Wilson Farms stores have, officially, come back home.

A local acquisition team, Wilson Farms Inc., formally acquired the popular convenience store chain from Tops Markets LLC's parent company, Ahold USA. The deal closed on Monday afternoon, according to a report in Business First.

The new Wilson Farms ownership team includes several former Tops officials including Paul Nanula, who was a Tops district manager for eight years, and Dan Shanahan, another one-time Tops executive. Nanula is Wilson Farms president and CEO while Shanahan is its vice president and chief financial officer.

Savino Nanula, Tops's former chairman and CEO, is the chairman of Wilson Farms Inc.

"It will be business as usual," Paul Nanula said.

Nanula said his company will soon embark on a capital improvement plan for all 198 Wilson Farm outlets, with work ranging from new coats of paint to complete reconstruction of some stores.

"Our team is pumped up and ready to go," Nanula said.

Tops owned Wilson Farms from 1969 until two years ago, when Ahold decided to sell off the convenience store chain as part of an overall strategy to focus solely on traditional supermarkets.

The Nanula group, whose financial backing included funds from Nanco Enterprises Inc. and the New York investment firm of Bruckman Rossser Sherrill & Co. Inc., emerged as the chief bidder late last year.

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