Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

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Re: Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

Post by storewanderer »

jamcool wrote: February 28th, 2024, 9:17 am How do the Safeways in the Colorado Mountain towns do compared to Denver? I suspect that is the cash cow for that division, (the way smaller towns are for Safeway in AZ.) The only major rival in those mountain towns is City Market-whose stores are very different from partner King Soopers.
Most of those seem to do better and are nicer stores. Colorado Springs also seems to be mostly okay... it is Denver and some suburbs that are a major problem.

But some of the more rural towns that aren't high income resort type places are also a problem with very outdated run down stores, easily the most run down stores in the entire chain.

Every place I've seen Safeway go against City Market, City Market slaughters them. Take Canon City for example- City Market has had multiple remodels over the years. Safeway sitting nearby with a good sized store but still has mid 90's interior for whatever reason. Almost nobody shops there.

Another one is Gunnison. Safeway had this... just awful store. I guess mid 70s. It had mid 90's interior until very recently. Then they recently did a wall remodel to the Modern decor but they kept the old 70s floors down; solid color green, brown, orange, etc. Unbelieveable. Meanwhile City Market in Gunnison again remodeled multiple times over the years... large modern store.

So the above two examples Safeway has extremely outdated substandard facilities compared to City Market in those small towns.

But then there are the other weird rural Safeways- Burlington they did relocate into an old Pamida or Alco or something but that was a real trip back in time; La Junta another trip with the 80s interior but I think may have gotten a cheap Modern remodel last year; Walsenburg an old run down gable with the late 80's marketplace interior; Lamar a large store with the mid 90's interior that I think may be a former King Soopers (doesn't seem like an original Safeway in there)... they don't compete against Kroger in these towns yet their stores are still just junk.

Now- others may say- why remodel when you're the only store in town? And I would say that may be a valid question. But Safeway in CA, OR, WA, etc. did remodel into Lifestyle even if they were the only store in town, in almost every case. Because the old strategy was to get every store to be a Lifestyle store and they got like 95% of their stores remodeled to that. The lack of remodel activity in Denver Division with these very outdated rural stores speaks volumes as to the situation with that division back at the Lifestyle era.
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Re: Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

Post by veteran+ »

Safeway in Colorado has been in decline (to my first hand experience) since the late 1970s.

When I worked at Kings Soopers under Dillons (twice), Safeway was bad (almost everywhere).

No one I knew shopped there and to this day (still have many friends there) RARELY walk into a Safeway.

I do not get this historical neglect.
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Re: Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

Post by SamSpade »

veteran+ wrote: February 29th, 2024, 8:44 am Safeway in Colorado has been in decline (to my first hand experience) since the late 1970s.

When I worked at Kings Soopers under Dillons (twice), Safeway was bad (almost everywhere).

No one I knew shopped there and to this day (still have many friends there) RARELY walk into a Safeway.

I do not get this historical neglect.
Dumb question - if they were so bad, why weren't they thrown off like the stores in Utah/Idaho in the 80s bankruptcy? Also, why did the company feel the "Safeway" brand was stronger with customers than Albertsons? :?
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Re: Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

Post by pseudo3d »

SamSpade wrote: February 29th, 2024, 10:58 am
veteran+ wrote: February 29th, 2024, 8:44 am Safeway in Colorado has been in decline (to my first hand experience) since the late 1970s.

When I worked at Kings Soopers under Dillons (twice), Safeway was bad (almost everywhere).

No one I knew shopped there and to this day (still have many friends there) RARELY walk into a Safeway.

I do not get this historical neglect.
Dumb question - if they were so bad, why weren't they thrown off like the stores in Utah/Idaho in the 80s bankruptcy? Also, why did the company feel the "Safeway" brand was stronger with customers than Albertsons? :?
I would assume that the divested divisions were judged on how important they were the core market, what they could get out of it, and how much it cost to operate. I'll have to check but I believe the Denver Division was up for discussion.

I liken it to Dominick's and Randalls/Tom Thumb. Randalls/Tom Thumb had abysmal market share in Houston and Austin in 2013, but Dominick's was so much more expensive to operate.
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Re: Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

Post by veteran+ »

SamSpade wrote: February 29th, 2024, 10:58 am
veteran+ wrote: February 29th, 2024, 8:44 am Safeway in Colorado has been in decline (to my first hand experience) since the late 1970s.

When I worked at Kings Soopers under Dillons (twice), Safeway was bad (almost everywhere).

No one I knew shopped there and to this day (still have many friends there) RARELY walk into a Safeway.

I do not get this historical neglect.
Dumb question - if they were so bad, why weren't they thrown off like the stores in Utah/Idaho in the 80s bankruptcy? Also, why did the company feel the "Safeway" brand was stronger with customers than Albertsons? :?
Great question and I don't get why.

I remember walking (competitive check) their stores and their best was like our worst. I thought Albertsons was better!

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Re: Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

Post by storewanderer »

SamSpade wrote: February 29th, 2024, 10:58 am
veteran+ wrote: February 29th, 2024, 8:44 am Safeway in Colorado has been in decline (to my first hand experience) since the late 1970s.

When I worked at Kings Soopers under Dillons (twice), Safeway was bad (almost everywhere).

No one I knew shopped there and to this day (still have many friends there) RARELY walk into a Safeway.

I do not get this historical neglect.
Dumb question - if they were so bad, why weren't they thrown off like the stores in Utah/Idaho in the 80s bankruptcy? Also, why did the company feel the "Safeway" brand was stronger with customers than Albertsons? :?
Maybe they were next to go but didn't end up having to go...

They put some pretty significant money into new stores in the early 90's in Denver Division.
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Re: Publix entering Louisville, KY in 2023

Post by storewanderer »

veteran+ wrote: February 29th, 2024, 8:44 am Safeway in Colorado has been in decline (to my first hand experience) since the late 1970s.

When I worked at Kings Soopers under Dillons (twice), Safeway was bad (almost everywhere).

No one I knew shopped there and to this day (still have many friends there) RARELY walk into a Safeway.

I do not get this historical neglect.
I've had the same experience. One trip to Denver 20+ years ago the people we were seeing there lived a few blocks from a Safeway and about 2 blocks additional over to a King Soopers. I suggested we go to Safeway since it was my favorite store back then. They didn't even hold a Safeway Club Card. They never shopped there and had various negative comments. Went to the store and the store was definitely "off" to say the least. Just didn't have as much to offer as King Soopers... seemed a little dirty... fresh items didn't seem fresh... low staffing level. Early 90's store. That particular store closed as a non-Lifestyle store a number of years back. The dumpy cave like King Soopers very busy, stuffed with merchandise, and well staffed, is still open and has had multiple remodels. It looked a lot better 2 remodels ago than it currently looks.

When things really went sideways for Safeway around Denver was when Super Target built multiple stores. Super Target took significant customers and employees from Safeway. At the same time King Soopers kept getting stronger and stronger. Albertsons largely left the market with LLC keeping a low number of stores supplying from Phoenix with very aggressive ads and well run that did medium-ish volume which was all thrown away when those stores got given to Denver Safeway to run (into the ground).

The division office for Denver Safeway is down by Englewood area. They have a store near the division office. Complete lifeless store but semi busy. Was one of the first units in Denver to get the low budget "Modern" remodel and one of the first to get self checkout after Albertsons re-initiated self checkout... Still feels "off." Little fresh product out, way too spacious, staffing levels seem like any other Denver Safeway (low), store just feels "off." The Safeway units near Pleasanton NorCal Division Office are top shelf and seem to have extra staffing/extra effort on fresh departments.
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