Albertsons is weighing a bid to take over Whole Foods, according to a report by the Financial Times.
According to the report, people close to the situation says the private equity firm backing Albertsons has already begun preliminary talks with banks detailing a bid for Whole Foods.
The Albertsons interest comes weeks after activist investor Jana Partners acquired a stake in Whole Foods and suggested that the retailers consider putting itself up for sale. Jana was not pleased with Whole Foods' recent performance.
Whole Foods shares rose 3.3 percent after the first report of Albertsons interest.
Albertsons acquired Safeway less that three years ago and became the third-largest supermarket chain, behind only Walmart and Kroger.