Cencosud, a Chilean retail group, has acquired a 67% share of the North Carolina based Fresh Market grocery chain for $676 million. The Fresh Market operates 160 stores in 22 states. Based in Chile, Cencosud operates 900 stores in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, and Colombia. The Fresh Market purchase is Cencosud’s first venture in the United States. The agreement to buy the grocer was reached through an agreement with controlling interest partner Apollo Global Management. “The agreement also establishes the possibility that through legal mechanisms that are practiced in the United States, after a certain period, Cencosud International can reach a 100% stake,” the Chilean firm said in the filing. “Cencosud has demonstrated that it is a world-class retailer with exceptional margins, and we look forward to sharing practices across our businesses,” said Jason Potter, CEO of The Fresh Market, in a statement. “The Fresh Market has experienced strong financial momentum over the last few years and this partnership with Cencosud will allow the company to further capture market share as we expand our footprint in our core Southeast market and beyond”.