- Meijer is opening three new supercenter stores next month in Northeast Ohio, according to Cleveland.com. The locations in Mentor, Stow, and Avon will open May 14, with celebratory promotions running on May 19.
- Each 155,000 square-foot location will embody Meijer’s "one-stop shopping" concept, offering fresh produce, meat and dairy products as well as a bakery department and a pharmacy. The 24-hour supercenters will also offer household items, electronics, apparel and outdoor gear. The Avon location will also feature a gas station.
- Meijer has reserved retail space inside the stores but has yet to identify tenants. The chain has partnered with a variety of retailers in other store locations including Ben’s Soft Pretzels and Starbucks along with various banks and healthcare providers.
Although based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Ohio is core to Meijer’s identity and its expansion strategy, having opened its first location in Columbus in 1981. With its three new locations, the retailer is kicking off its Northeast Ohio expansion plan announced in 2015, which involves opening 11 more stores in the next five years. The next two locations are slated to open in Brimfield and Lorain by 2020. Meijer currently runs 39 other stores throughout the state and operates 240 store locations across six Midwest states.
Tom Wilson, regional VP for Meijer, said Ohio is "very important" to the retailer in a press release announcing the opening dates for the new stores. Ohio is the second largest state for Meijer in terms of store count, and Northeast Ohio is the state’s largest metropolitan area, making it the logical target for building a stronger presence in the region and tapping into the local workforce. The Mentor location alone will hire 300 workers.
Staying close to its distribution center in Tipp City will help stores compete and fulfill e-commerce orders to stay competitive with Walmart, Kroger and other big names. Digital has become a priority for Meijer of late. Last month, the company added Shop & Scan technology to 23 locations in the Chicago metro area and Northwest Indiana following a successful test run at 54 Michigan store locations.
In addition to its supercenter expansion, Meijer has also begun building small-scale urban grocery stores. The first, Bridge Street Market, opened in Grand Rapids last summer, and the second, Woodward Corner Market, is set to open next year in Detroit. Meijer plans to build four more of these small stores over the next two years, according to reports.