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Kroger Expands Fulfillment Network With More Spokes

Grocer’s e-commerce business grows with Tennessee and Illinois facilities
Marian Zboraj, Progressive Grocer
Kroger Spoke
Kroger is adding more spoke facilities in Nashville, Tenn., and Maywood, Ill.

More Americans will get to experience Kroger Delivery now that the food retailer has opened additional spoke facilities in Maywood, Ill., and Nashville, Tenn. Working in conjunction with nearby fulfillment centers, Kroger Delivery will now reach customers in greater Nashville and the Chicago metro area. The expansion represents an extension of a partnership between Kroger and Ocado Group, a U.K.-based provider of technology for grocery e-commerce that's helping the grocer to establish a high-tech delivery network.

"Kroger Delivery offers customers a truly differentiated service. Orders are transported in refrigerated trucks and delivered by trained Kroger uniformed associates, giving customers an unparalleled white-glove delivery experience," said Bill Bennett, VP and head of e-commerce at The Kroger Co. "Kroger Delivery is part of our rapidly expanding seamless ecosystem that provides customers with fresh and quality products when and where they want it – all with zero compromise and at an incredible value."

The nearly 80,000-square-foot spoke facility located in Maywood is approximately 20 miles west of Chicago. It will work concurrently with the fulfillment center in Pleasant Prairie, Wis., and expects to employ more than 180 associates to serve an area designated as a food desert.

The approximately 40,000-square-foot facility in Nashville, located on Polk Avenue, will create more than 180 new jobs. The facility will work in conjunction with the Atlanta fulfillment center to increase the network's reach to customers up to 200 miles from the hub. Kroger also recently launched another e-commerce initiative in the Atlanta area. With partner Market Wagon, its new digital farmers market platform provides shoppers with a wide variety of locally sourced fresh foods for delivery.

Local shoppers in both spoke locations will have access to the newly launched Boost by Kroger annual membership program. For either $59 or $99 per year, Boost provides customers with benefits like unlimited free delivery on orders of $35 or more, and two Fuel Points for every $1 spent on groceries and general merchandise purchases through delivery or pickup, and in stores. Kroger estimates that the membership can save inflation-weary customers more than $1,000 per year on fuel and grocery delivery.

Meanwhile, Kroger raised its guidance on June 16 after reporting strong sales and earnings in the first quarter. Total company sales were $44.6 billion, compared with $41.3 billion for the same period last year. Also, digitally engaged households grew by more than half a million and digital coupon downloads increased 11%.

Serving 60 million households annually nationwide through a digital shopping experience, and almost 2,800 retail food stores under a variety of banner names, Cincinnati-based Kroger is No. 4 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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