Publix Northern Migration Accelerates with 7-Store Bi-Lo Deal
On the heels of Bi-Lo Holding LLC’s plans to acquire 22 Piggly Wiggly Carolina Co. stores in Georgia and South Carolina, the Jacksonville, Fla.-based parent of its namesake banner and Winn Dixie has tendered yet another deal with Publix Super Markets for the sale of seven Bi-Lo stores in North and South Carolina.
The seven-store deal is projected to close next month, and represents a direct challenge to native North Carolina-based Harris Teeter, which is in the process of being acquired by The Kroger Co. as part of a Southeastern U.S. supermarket shakeup that was initiated with Publix’s northern migration, which has accelerated in the past year.
“Publix has a strong financial foundation that allows us to aggressively grow throughout existing markets and our new Charlotte Division,” said Publix CEO Ed Crenshaw. “Publix offers differentiating services we know our customers have come to expect from us like premier service, valuable savings, quality products and knowledgeable associates. We’re excited to continue building life-long relationships with our Carolina customers and communities.”
Randall Onstead, president and CEO of Bi-Lo Holdings, said the move is on par with the company’s continued efforts to “reinvest in what matters most for our customers,” citing the company’s recent plans to acquire 165 stores from Delhaize Group and the stores from Piggly Wiggly Carolina Company.
“This process is helping us fuel our long-term strategy of providing the freshest foods and the best deals to a broader base of customers,” added Onstead. “Where we are refining our store footprint with this transaction, we will ensure impacted associates are treated respectfully and can pursue other open positions in nearby stores.”
The stores that Publix will acquire from Bi-Lo Holdings include:
• 8120 S. Tryon Street, Charlotte, N.C.
• 12810 York Road, Charlotte, N.C.
• 9815 Rose Commons Drive, Huntersville, N.C.
• 158 Hwy. 274, Lake Wylie, S.C.
• Fincher Farm Rd., Matthews, N.C.
• 1735 Heckle Blvd., Rock Hill, S.C.
• 2186 Cherry Rd., Rock Hill, S.C.
According to local media reports, Publix plans to start from scratch when hiring associates for the seven stores it’s taking over from Bi-Lo.
Privately owned and operated Publix has 1,073 stores in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and Tennessee, and employs 160,500 associates. Bi-Lo Holdings, LLC employs nearly 60,000 associates who serve customers in 686 grocery stores and 482 in-store pharmacies throughout eight southeastern states.