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Originally published December 17, 2012 at 4:40 PM | Page modified December 17, 2012 at 9:57 PM

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Vitamin Shoppe to buy Super Supplements

The Vitamin Shoppe of North Bergen, N.J., said it will buy Super Supplements for about $50 million in cash to expand its West Coast presence.

Seattle Times business reporter

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Seeking to expand its West Coast presence, national chain Vitamin Shoppe said Monday it has reached a deal to buy the assets of Seattle-based competitor Super Supplements for about $50 million in cash.

Vitamin Shoppe, a specialty retailer of nutritional products based in North Bergen, N.J., expects to complete the purchase by the end of the month.

It operates 17 stores in the Northwest, while Super Supplements has 31 locations in Washington, Oregon and Idaho.

Vitamin Shoppe CEO Tony Truesdale said in a statement that the companies share the same “values and commitment to health and wellness,” creating both a strategic and cultural fit.

He added that Super Supplements’ key management team will remain in place.

“We are all very proud of what we have built and accomplished since 1994,” Super Supplements CEO Jim Sweeney said, “and we are very excited that the next chapter for Super Supplements will be as part of the Vitamin Shoppe family.”

Sweeney, speaking by phone Monday, noted that all 31 stores will continue to operate under the Super Supplements name, and the company’s 400 employees will keep their jobs.

“There will be no job loss whatsoever. We still have 31 stores to run,” said Sweeney, who will oversee Vitamin Shoppe’s Northwest operations after the deal is finished.

Vitamin Shoppe projected that Super Supplements will contribute about $75 million in sales next year and be neutral or slightly positive for per-share earnings as the costs of integrating the privately held company into its business offset operating profit.

Shares of Vitamin Shoppe closed Monday at $56.45, up 77 cents. The stock has traded between $35.60 and $61.89 in the past 52 weeks.

Vitamin Shoppe, which operates more than 560 stores, recently posted a third-quarter profit of $16.3 million as sales rose 14 percent from a year ago to $239 million. It had $76 million in cash and equivalents at the end of September.

Amy Martinez: 206-464-2923 or amartinez@seattletimes.com

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