Marks and Spencer has finally exited the US market with the sale of its east coast supermarket chain, Kings, in a $160m (£101m) deal. The buyer, privately owned D'Agostino Supermarkets, stepped in with an offer for the 29-strong chain after preferred buyer Gristedès failed to come up with the cash. Analysts said the price was at the low end of expectations, but all M&S could expect given the turmoil in global financial markets post September 11. The deal is the final piece of the jigsaw in M&S's plan to sell its businesses in mainland Europe and the US to focus on its UK portfolio. M&S clothing and international director David Norgrove said the price was "fair": "Kings is a high quality supermarket chain with a committed workforce and a loyal customer base in its key markets. However, it is not a good fit with the M&S core business or strategic priorities." M&S bought Kings in 1988 for $110m (£70m). Operating profit in 2001 was £17.9m (£11.9m). {{NEWS }}