Supervalu Inc. has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire eight Albertsons stores in Wyoming from Albertsons LLC.

Stephanie Martin, director of communications for Supervalu, said the stores will continue to operate under the name Albertsons and the in-store pharmacies will continue under the name Osco.

No changes in labor force or store operations are planned, she added.

At present, Supervalu operates Albertsons stores in Rock Springs and Jackson. Once the sale is complete - which is expected in late January - the company will acquire two stores in Casper, two stores in Cheyenne, and single stores in Cody, Gillette, Laramie and Sheridan.

Supervalu is a publicly traded company. Martin said more details of the transaction will be available after the deal is completed.

She said Albertsons LLC approached Supervalu about buying the Wyoming stores: "The opportunity just came available at this point."

"These are really wonderful stores, and they've done a terrific job in the community for a long time," Martin added. "We're really, really thrilled to have them as part of our Supervalu family."

Supervalu, based in Eden Prairie, Minn., is one of the largest grocery chains in the United States, with estimated annual sales of about $44 billion and 190,000 employees.

In 2006, Supervalu acquired more than 1,100 stores in a deal with Albertsons Inc.

Business Editor Tom Mast can be reached at tom.mast@trib.com, or call 307-266-0574.

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