Friday, October 14, 2022

[CLOSURE ALERT] Kroger to Shutter Two Atlanta Area Stores

Kroger announced Friday it plans to close two locations — "Baby Kroger" at 720 Commerce Drive in Decatur and "Disco Kroger" at 3330 Piedmont Road in Buckhead.  The Decatur location, which has been open for 21 years, will close as of December 2. The Piedmont Road store, which has been in business 47 years, will close December 9 according to the press release. 

According to Kroger, the Decatur location has experienced "declining sales and negative profit over an extended period," and its closure is necessary to make Kroger more competitive in the market.  The "Baby" Kroger was originally built in 1968 as a Colonial grocery but spent its later years an A&P, before becoming a Harris Teeter in the early 2000s.  Harris Teeter exited the Atlanta market in 2001, after which the Decatur store reopened as Kroger.  (The entire Harris Teeter company was acquired by Kroger in 2013 in a deal valued at $2.5 billion.)  

The "Baby" Kroger, which measured less than 15,000 square feet, was the grocer's smallest store in the market.  Kroger has previously closed small format stores downtown near the state Capital, along Peachtree Road in South Buckhead, and on North Decatur Road in Emory Village, among others.  

The Buckhead store's lease expires in 2023.  ToNeTo Atlanta reported in July 2021 that its space is slated to be demolished and rebuilt as a new Publix store.  The center, Piedmont Peachtree Crossing, was recently rebranded "Buckhead Landing," to coincide with new enhancements, tenants and its new anchor.   

“All 59 associates at the Commerce Drive location and all 84 associates at the Piedmont Road location will be reassigned to other Kroger locations as outlined in the company’s collective bargaining agreement,” said Victor Smith, president of Kroger’s Atlanta Division.

Liquidation sales at the affected stores are slated to begin in the coming days.  

Kroger also Friday announced it plans to merge with rival grocer Albertsons in a deal valued at $24.6 billion.  Cincinnati-based Kroger will, if the deal goes through as planned, include 47 banners operating about 5,000 stores in 48 states with a market capitalization of nearly $50 billion.  According to a report by CNBC, the combined company would control about 16 percent of the U.S. grocery market by dollars spent, just below industry leader Walmart which controls nearly 21 percent.  

Following the closures, Kroger will continue to operate more than 160 stores in Georgia.  A new 90,000 square foot store was expected to open this fall along Powers Ferry Road near East Cobb, but its opening has been pushed to 2023.  The new store will replace a roughly 45,000 square foot, circa 1983 Kroger at 1122 Powers Ferry Road, less than a mile away.  

Are you surprised to see both the "Baby" and "Disco" Krogers close?  What would you like to see in place of the "Baby" Kroger in Decatur?  Where do you do the majority of your grocery shopping?

Please share your thoughts below.  

41 comments:

Anonymous said...

Very clearly Kroger is ceding the market to Publix all around the metro Atlanta.

vespajet said...

The Decatur store was just too small to remain viable as a Kroger; even the typical Aldi location is bigger than that store.

I disagree with the earlier poster's comment about Kroger ceding the market to Publix around Metro Atlanta. For a number of years, Publix has closed locations in areas where the demographics have changed to the point where locations were not profitable for them and a number of those locations have reopened as either a Food Depot location or a location of a local ethnic grocery store chains like Nam Dae Mun or City Farmer's Market. Publix is more of an "upscale" grocery chain even compared to Kroger (Who does have some nice locations around Metro Atlanta, but their locations in more "urban" or ethnically diverse areas are not as nice as those in higher income area.).

Anonymous said...

Aldi into the “Baby” location although I’m sure they’ll look at adding onto it or redeveloping the site.

Ceding might be too strong of a term but Kroger definitely isn’t defending their turf either. Each location you can see most of the area the stores served have been bookended by Publix or quite literate bought out from under Kroger. Doesn’t signal the end but definitely shows the battles are going Publix’s way currently at the very least.

Anonymous said...

My forecast is that Kroger will now turn their executive attention away from nurturing the Atlanta market and spend more time and resources towards nurturing the Albertson’s markets and locations.

Additionally, based on the exact standards and criteria used by Kroger to close stores in the last 3 years, there are now several others also tagged for closure in the pipeline over the next 3 years.

We will see more and more Krogers shutter and more Publix grand openings.

Anonymous said...

The Disco Buckhead store has gone so downhill. They have a ridiculous lack of staff. The self checkout is often 30 people deep. Can only imagine the amount of food past expiration they're missing. Saw a homeless guy stick a ham down his pants once. Store is just ghetto. Good riddance.

Anonymous said...

I wonder what Kroger's plans are for their Cleveland Ave location. It is a mess and always looks picked over. It's the store that Kroger forgot.

Anonymous said...

Bring on Trader Joe’s to baby Decatur spot

Anonymous said...

Such a shame, an island of ghetto smack in the middle of toney Buckhead. It is Kroger’s fault. In my observation Kroger always lets their assets deteriorate. No matter the location, milk and dairy is never cold or fresh with dates expired, produce is spoiled and looks and smells like a restaurant dumpster, meats and deli are terrible and very sketchy and shouldn’t be trusted. Groceries are aged, crushed, damaged and expired freshness. Fans of Kroger, look carefully and pay attention when you shop. It amazes me that people either willfully ignore or just don’t see these major issues.

Anonymous said...

Baby Kroger was too small and they lacked in variety. I only went there if I needed one simple item like a green pepper. I’ve always wondered why that store was even open.

Anonymous said...

Agree on some of the Kroger going downhill observations. I think it’s a shame, since I think the competition of having the two conventional grocers is healthy for the market. In my neck of the woods I could definitely see them shuttering Clairmont Skye Hill and the Lavista Road store in Tucker. Both are outdated and neglected.

The Kroger Albertsons merger just looks like a disaster in the making, given that neither company is particularly well run these days and Kroger is going to be in very unfamiliar territory in the Northeastern markets. They will have a lot to swallow, and I think Atlanta will not be getting a lot of attention from them for a few years.

Anonymous said...

I just wish it was possible to buy groceries after 11 pm in a major city like Atlanta.

Anonymous said...

Kroger at Clairmont - Skye Hill is so run down it reminds me of a junk store.

Anonymous said...

Krogers always smell strange.

Anonymous said...

Krogerbis closing high theft stores that blacks frequent, plain and simple. Whenever an area turns ghetto, supermarkets close.

Anonymous said...

Meh... We used to shop at Kroger (Douglasville/Hiram) but they started getting too expensive, and the quality (esp the meat dept) was going downhill.
There's another one, very close to us (Carrollton), but it's one of the "Super Krogers". We seldom go in there. Aside from the parking lot being a zoo, when we're looking for groceries, we don't need to see clothes, patio furniture, or jewelry. We do Ingles or Publix.

Anonymous said...

To the person worrying about Kroger taking on Albertson's locations in the northeast, fret not, Albertston's doesn't have a northeastern presence. They're primarily located in the western/southwestern US.

Anonymous said...

One of the stories last week about the Albertson's acquisition had a quote from an exec talking about "best in class", and I had to laugh, because that sure as hell isn't Kroger...

I buy a few things there that are priced well below Publix, but I can't bring myself to shop there. I'd say it's because they sell ground beef in a tube -- but even Publix is going to more commissary-based meat prep so that's no longer a great excuse. Find it hard to get in and out of a store quickly. In some ways they're too big.

They seem like the odd one out. I'll go to Publix for sale items and anything I can't find or don't like from the Aldi/Lidl/WalMarts of the world. Kroger in the middle gets less of my business...

Anonymous said...

That's laughable. Kroger is not going anywhere.

Anonymous said...

Look to the clientele who trash the stores. Facts are facts. People don't appreciate what they have until it's gone.

Anonymous said...

You know that Kroger already is out west? They own Fred Meyer and others. Look it up.

Anonymous said...

Truth!!!

Anonymous said...

Kroger isn’t my first or second choice for grocery store but they are ol’ reliable when it’s late at night, a holiday (I think), or during a paralyzing ice storm.

I remember during the great freeze that Publix was closed but Kroger stayed open. As a single guy who didn’t keep groceries at home, Kroger was a life saver.

Anonymous said...

Publix is owned by the Publix employees, from the baggers to the president. Kroger's employees answer to the union and the union negotiates with Kroger corporate. It's an adversarial dynamic by design. It shows in the attitudes.

Anonymous said...

To the poster at 2:12 regarding an "island of ghetto in toney Buckhead", have you been through that area of Buckhead lately? "Metro" Buckhead is hardly toney anymore.

Anonymous said...

100%

Anonymous said...

Albertson's has a large Northeastern presence as they own Safeway (DC and Baltimore area), Acme (Philly and North Jersey), and Shaws (New England). Hundreds of stores.

Anonymous said...

The Kroger/Albertsons merger will not happen. Look back at Office Depot/Staples or Walgreens/Rite Aid. They were stopped. There are far too many markets where they compete head to head. So Cal, Seattle, Phoenix, Denver, Dallas, DC and the Chicago area to name a few. They would have to either close or divest many stores to appease the regulators and the nonsense of creating a separate banner for about 300 of some of those overlapping stores is nothing more than smoke and mirrors to gain approval. Those 300 stores won’t last a year as Kroger will ignore them financially. The FTC sued to stop Kroger from buying Winn Dixie in 2000 and Whole Foods from buying Whole Oats in 2007. I just don’t see it happening. As far as the ATL market, Kroger started to either remodel or rebuild when Publix first entered the market years ago. Since then they have returned to their normal form of business. Not surprised that they’re closing stores around the area.

Anonymous said...

Dis beez duh absolooof troof!

Anonymous said...

👍🏻

Anonymous said...

Yep.

Anonymous said...

This will happen. Kroger has done this many times before successfully, in as much as assimilating the old brands into their own. They’ll sell off Albertsons/Safeway locations where they have to (i.e. PacNW) and move on successfully.

Anonymous said...

The senate is now involved. It will not happen. Write it down and take it to Vegas.

Anonymous said...

Yes, take it to Smith’s Food and Drug in Vegas, which Fred Meyer and Kroger did the same thing with years ago. Take it there and look around and see what Albertsons will look like in two years: owned by Kroger. In Vegas. Senators will shop there. At Kroger.

Anonymous said...

Stop lying

Anonymous said...

Last time I was at Disco Kroger I saw a cracked out woman walking around with panties on her head. Buckhead is a ghetto mess.

Anonymous said...

Used to live near Disco about 10-12 years ago and went there at all hours. To me it was just an average Kroger. I've seen a huge discrepancy of "nice" vs "trashy" in Kroger stores. I wish Management would address that, but alas, it's a unionized company. Nice, clean, organized = new Chamblee Tucker store. Trashy, picked over, rotting meat = Northlake store. Being 100% employee-owned, you don't see that with ANY Publix - ever.

Anonymous said...

🤣

Anonymous said...

Simple truth

Anonymous said...

As a black person that is soooo true that's why I shop at publix

Anonymous said...

You know Publix is just as bad as Kroger publix do not sell all foods plus publix is high very high in groceries you complaining Kroger are expensive When i buy stuffs the prices are reasonable with the Kroger Plus Card. Buckhead already have a Publix its up the street . So whats the since having 2 publix you know what they need to do . Bring a Walmart or Aldi In Buckhead not publix . I dont understand why the Kroger in Buckhead Closing i go there all the time its always full of costumers .

Anonymous said...

I agree. I have been shopping at several Atlanta Kroger stores for 47 years. For the last 18 months, I have had to look at the expiration dates-on meat, milk, eggs, and canned goods. Except for Aldi, which does not have the wide variety but has the best prices, Kroger has great prices and points for lower gas prices. I have also consistently found polite, helper workers at Kroger. However, the lead managers at both Disco Kroger and Fountain Oaks are phantom people, seen fleetingly, only in our dreams.

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