Business & Real Estate

Sacramento’s Vic’s IGA market closes in bankruptcy

A long-standing Sacramento grocery store – Vic’s IGA market on South Land Park Drive – has closed its doors in advance of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing.

The market has been a decades-long fixture at 5820 S. Land Park Drive and a cornerstone in the former IGA chain overseen by Sacramento grocer Vic De Stefani.

Sacramento bankruptcy attorney Peter Macaluso said Thursday that the store closed for business on Sunday, and arrangements were made to pay the store’s seven to 10 employees through that time.

Macaluso said he has allowed time for creditors and others to evaluate assets and claim personal belongings. He said the bankruptcy filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Sacramento could be completed by Friday.

“I did not want to hurry this. I want it to be an orderly liquidation,” he said.

Macaluso identified the owner as a Sacramento-based corporation, A.L.L. Groups Inc. The attorney said the store’s lease was purchased within the past few years but he had no information on plans for the property, which anchors the South Hills shopping center. Efforts to reach A.L.L. Groups were unsuccessful.

The bankruptcy attorney said the traditional-looking Vic’s IGA market was inundated by the proliferation of nearby major competitors, including Raley’s, Sprouts, Nugget Markets, Grocery Outlet, Bel Air Markets and Smart & Final.

The store’s longtime owner, De Stefani, was a veteran presence in the Sacramento grocery business, who routinely carried 40-pound boxes of produce in and out of his stores right up until his retirement in 2011 at the age of 82, according to a 2011 story in The Sacramento Bee. He was in the grocery business for 64 years, including nearly three decades as owner of the Vic’s IGA market chain.

Over the years, De Stefani owned seven Vic’s stores stretching from south Sacramento to Folsom. He gradually sold off stores as he neared retirement. In The Bee story, De Stefani said it was virtually impossible to compete with well-financed, big-chain grocers “when they sell a gallon of milk for five cents less than we paid for it wholesale.”

Call The Bee’s Mark Glover, (916) 321-1184.