U.S. Bank and Kroger Expand 80-year Relationship With New Strategic Payments Alliance

Jun 09, 2010, 09:00 ET from The Kroger Co.

MINNEAPOLIS and CINCINNATI, June 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- U.S. Bank, lead bank of U.S. Bancorp (NYSE: USB) and The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) today announced a strategic alliance that will give Kroger customers a suite of payment products.  

As part of the alliance, U.S. Bank has purchased Kroger's existing credit card portfolio from RBS Citizens N.A., and plans to offer additional financial services for Kroger customers. Kroger is a large, well-known brand with strong customer loyalty, which creates an ideal platform to introduce innovative payments products and financial services.

"Our expanded partnership with Kroger leverages U.S. Bank's entire spectrum of retail and consumer banking services," said Pam Joseph, vice chair of payment services for U.S. Bancorp. "Our industry leading payments experience, together with Kroger's loyal customer base and significant retail expertise enables us to drive growth and enhance value with these new payment services."

The alliance is an expansion of U.S. Bank's extensive financial services relationship with Kroger, the nation's largest traditional grocery retailer, which began in 1930. U.S. Bank currently provides a number of retail, corporate banking, trust, capital markets and credit services for Kroger. Kroger has nearly 2,500 locations operating under several brand names and U.S. Bank operates bank branches in 192 of those locations through an in-store banking relationship.

"Both Kroger and U.S. Bank are committed to great customer service and providing customers with the right financial products to meet their needs," said Kathy Kelly, president of Kroger Personal Finance. "Together with U.S. Bank, Kroger Personal Finance is excited to continue developing new, innovative financial products and services for our customers."

About Kroger Personal Finance

Kroger Personal Finance® (KPF) offers customers convenient, affordable personal finance products and services from preferred providers. These include credit cards, gift and prepaid cards, insurance, ID theft protection and in-store money services such as check cashing, Coinstar® and Western Union®.  Information on KPF products and services is available in the nearly 2,500 stores Kroger operates under two dozen local banner names including Kroger, Ralphs, Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, Smith's, Dillons, QFC and City Market.  For more information about Kroger Personal Finance, visit www.krogerpersonalfinance.com.  

About Kroger

Kroger, the nation's largest traditional grocery retailer, employs more than 334,000 associates who serve customers in 2,468 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 31 states under two dozen local banner names including Kroger, City Market, Dillons, Jay C, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs and Smith's. The company also operates 777 convenience stores, 374 fine jewelry stores, 893 supermarket fuel centers and 40 food processing plants in the United States. Kroger, headquartered in Cincinnati, focuses its charitable efforts on supporting hunger relief, health and wellness initiatives, and local organizations in the communities it serves. For more information about Kroger, please visit www.kroger.com.

About U.S. Bancorp

U.S. Bancorp (NYSE: USB), with $282 billion in assets as of March 31, 2010, is the parent company of U.S. Bank, the fifth largest commercial bank in the United States. The company operates 3,025 banking offices in 24 states and 5,312 ATMs and provides a comprehensive line of banking, brokerage, insurance, investment, mortgage, trust and payment services products to consumers, businesses and institutions. Visit U.S. Bancorp on the web at usbank.com.

SOURCE The Kroger Co.