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Grocery Outlet to Expand Pacific Northwest Presence; Also Looking East

BERKELEY, California -- Grocery Outlet Inc., an extreme value food retailer with 122 stores in 7 western States, will add four new stores during the next three months to continue to build upon its network of independently operated stores in the Pacific Northwest.

The new locations are Bonney Lake Wash., (September 2005), Camas Wash., (October 2005), Madrona, Wash. (October 2005), and Marysville, Wash. (October 2005). Each store will have the standard Grocery outlet specs -- approximately 16,000 square feet -- as well as offerings. "We keep a similar footprint and shape for all the stores," said Wylie. "Most are in secondary locations -- probably 95 percent. We won't go much higher on the square footage because we like to keep the inventory moving."

The retailer also has long-term plans to expand eastward, though it still sees opportunities on the Pacific Coast. "There is still plenty of real estate available in our market," Jon Wylie, v.p. of marketing told Progressive Grocer. "Our real estate person is always on the road checking them out. However, the rising transportation costs makes it increasingly expensive to source product from the East. The suppliers out there always tell us if we moved out there, they can get more products to us."

Grocery Outlet provides independent franchise operators with support in the form of real estate selection, purchasing, distribution, and backroom functions, allowing them to focus on merchandising and customer service.
-- Joseph Tarnowski
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