FTC Seeks Public Comments on Trustee's Proposal for Sale of Portland, Maine, Store Under Whole Foods Market Inc. Divestiture Order

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The Federal Trade Commission is seeking public comments on an application filed by the Divestiture Trustee to divest one store pursuant to the Commission’s March 5, 2009 order, which was issued to help restore the competition lost by Whole Foods Market Inc.’s 2007 acquisition of Wild Oats Market, Inc. Under that order, the Commission appointed The Food Partners as the Divestiture Trustee to divest certain Wild Oats stores and the intellectual property associated with the Wild Oats brand. The Divestiture Trustee is now requesting FTC approval to sell the Whole Foods store at 87 Marginal Way, Portland, Maine, to Trader Joe’s East, Inc.

Previously, the Divestiture Trustee requested FTC approval to sell the former Wild Oats store at 4301 Main Street in Kansas City, Missouri, to Healthy Investments, LLC; and the former Wild Oats store at 1651 Broadway in Boulder, Colorado, to A-M Holdings, LLC (see press release at: http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2010/03/wholefoods.shtm). Whole Foods still must divest certain intellectual property related to Wild Oats under the terms of the FTC’s order.

The Commission is accepting public comments on the Divestiture Trustee’s petitions for 30 days, until April 9, 2010. To file a public comment in electronic form, please click on the following hyperlink: https://public.commentworks.com/ftc/wholefoodspet2 and follow the instructions at that site. Written comments should be sent to: FTC Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Washington, DC 20580. Copies of the petitions can be found on the FTC’s Web site and as a link to this press release. (FTC Docket No. 9324; the staff contact is Daniel P. Ducore, Bureau of Competition, 202-326-2526; see press release dated March 6, 2009, at: http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2009/03/wholefoods.shtm.)

Copies of the documents mentioned in this release are available from the FTC’s Web site at http://www.ftc.gov and from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20580. Call toll-free: 1-877-FTC-HELP.

(FYI 10.2010.wpd)

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