Handy Andy to Close Four Grocery Stores

SAN ANTONIO, Texas - The Handy Andy grocery chain, which in recent years has struggled to compete against much bigger supermarket companies, will close four of its stores, the San Antonio Express-News reports.

Three of the stores are in San Antonio, and a fourth one is in Lockhart in central Texas.

The landlord of one store and employees at other locations said the Handy Andys would close in the coming weeks. Shoppers attested that the stores occasionally lacked products, but were convenient. Handy Andy has 16 locations in Bexar and surrounding counties, according to Trade Dimensions International.

Over the past several years other Handy Andy stores have shut down as the company lost customers to H-E-B and Wal-Mart. H-E-B leads the area market with a 67 percent share, Wal-Mart is second with 19 percent, and military stores are third with 3.9 percent. Handy Andy's parent company ranks fourth with a 3 percent share, Trade Dimensions says.

H.A. Assets owned the Handy Andy chain until November 2000. That company defaulted on a $12 million loan, and Handy Andy went to Houston-based Grocers Supply Co., Inc., the Southwest's biggest grocery wholesaler. Grocers Supply created the Bexar County Markets subsidiary to manage the Handy Andy chain.
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