Whole Foods Goes Wild

Austin-based Whole Foods Market, the world’s largest retailer of natural and organic foods has agreed to buy competitor Wild Oats Markets.

Whole Foods has 91 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, while Wild Oats operates 110 stores in 24 states and British Columbia, Canada, under four banners: Wild Oats Marketplace, Henry’s Farmers Market, Sun Harvest and Capers Community Market.

All of Whole Foods’ 11 operating regions will gain stores, with three of its smallest regions gaining critical mass. Additionally, Whole Foods is to gain immediate entry into a significant number of new markets.

Whole Foods has made 18 retail acquisitions since its inception, with the Wild Oats acquisition representing the largest.

Whole Foods said it expects to make significant investments in remodeling stores before eventually rebranding them as Whole Foods Market stores.