Judge Blocks Lucky Merger
A federal judge today blocked the $2.6-billion merger of the Lucky and Alpha Beta supermarket chains, saying the deal would “substantially lessen competition” in violation of antitrust laws.
“This court finds that unless defendants are enjoined, the citizens of California will be substantially and irreparably harmed,” U.S. District Judge David Kenyon said. Atty. Gen. John Van de Kamp sued to bar the acquisition of Lucky Stores by American Stores Co., owner of Alpha Beta, saying the merger would kill competition and thus drive up prices at the checkout stand. The preliminary injunction issued by Kenyon forbids any further action on the merger until the merits of the case are aired in court.