In just three weeks, there have been two "mega" retailers announcing the closing of more than 100 stores each around the country. Last week, I reported on Sears, and this past week Belgian supermarket chain Delhaize Group said it will close 113 Food Lion stores as it struggles with tight consumer spending and increased competition. About 4,900 jobs will be lost.
The company's subsidiary Delhaize America is a leading supermarket operator in the United States with more than 1,600 stores in 16 states. Their brands are Bloom, Bottom Dollar Food, Food Lion, Hannaford, Harveys, Reid's and Sweetbay. Interestingly, they did not announce that any Harveys were being closed, which obviously is good for us, because we have two here in Statesboro.
The Food Lion stores being closed in Georgia are in College Park, Conyers, Dallas, Douglasville, Fayetteville, Gainesville, Jefferson, Jonesboro, Lawrenceville, Marietta, Newnan (2), Evans, Martinez (2), Chatsworth, Fort Oglethorpe, Rossville, Trenton, Waycross, Macon (2), Warner Robins (2), Garden City, Rincon, Savannah (2) and Carrollton.
Not knowing specific sales numbers, I can only speculate, but it seems to me that both of our Harveys do fairly well. I live near the university, so I don't shop at the Harveys on Northside Drive very often, but when I do go in there, it is always very busy.
As you know the west side of Statesboro has not seen the level of commercial development that has occurred around the mall area and near the university.
However, it ever so quietly continues to plug along, i.e., the new Enmark station, and now Fred's, slated to open on January 27, across from Harveys on Northside Drive. After working out the other day, I stopped and took a peek in the new store, and it looks as if it is going to be very nice.
We have had a Fred's store for several years in the College Plaza shopping center next to 180 Fitness, thus making this the second one in Statesboro. For those of you not familiar with the company, Fred's Inc. (NASDAQ:FRED) is located in Memphis, TN, and operates 695 discount general merchandise stores, including 22 franchised Fred's stores, in the southeastern United States. Its revenues for this current fiscal year ending January 31 are projected to approach $2 billion dollars.
There is one more closing to touch on, and that is the closing of Sonny's Barbeque on the Veterans Memorial Parkway near the Millhouse Restaurant. While Sonny's does phenomenally well in a number of cities, it had a very difficult time here. Even though the restaurant business may be the absolute toughest, there are plans in the works for more national restaurant chains to open restaurants in Statesboro. I will do my best to keep you informed.
So, until next Tuesday, I bid you au revoir.
Got a scoop for Jan? Call her at (912) 489-9463 or email her at email@example.com