Haggen Pacific Southwest CEO Bill Shaner.
Friday, May 29, 2015|2 a.m.
. A growing name in the grocery video game is concerning Southern Nevada next month.
Haggen Inc. recently purchased 7 Vons and Albertsons shops in the area and will certainly transform them to the Haggen Food & & Drug store brand in the next few weeks.
Nevada consumers might not be familiar with the Bellingham, Wash.-based chain, which was established in 1933. Haggen states it intends to be a one-stop store concentrating on fresh, locally sourced items together with huge brand names.
Last year, Albertsons and Safeway revealed strategies to combine and had to sell a few of their suppliers to satisfy anti-monopoly requirements. Haggen consented to purchase 146 suppliers, enhancing its number of places from 18 to 164 and its employee count from about 2,000 to about 10,000.
The chain, which already had suppliers in Washington and Oregon, got a presence in Nevada, California and Arizona with the purchase.
The conversions at the suppliers in Las Vegas, Henderson and Rock City will start June 7. Staff members at the Vons and Albertsons stores will have the opportunity to remain on board as Haggen employees.
Amongst the modifications Haggen says it’s making at the stores throughout the 40-hour conversion procedure are presenting a bigger range of organic produce; including higher-quality meats and seafood; enhancing service-deli products, such as much healthier, house-made salads and preservative-free meats; and revamping the bakeries to include fresh-baked products such as cinnamon rolls and grab-and-go breakfast sandwiches.
Haggen conversion schedule
All suppliers will close at 6 p.m. and reopen in the afternoon 2 days later on.
– Vons, 1031 Nevada Highway in Rock City; closes June 7, reopens June 9.
– Albertsons, 2910 Bicentennial Parkway in Henderson; closes June 7, resumes June 9.
– Albertsons, 190 N. Rock Highway in Henderson; closes June 9, resumes June 11.
– Vons, 7530 W. Lake Mead Blvd in Las Vegas; closes June 9, resumes June 11.
– Albertsons, 575 College Drive in Henderson; closes June 9, resumes June 11.
– Vons, 820 S. Rampart Blvd in Las Vegas; closes June 11, resumes June 13.
– Vons, 1940 Town Center Circle in Las Vegas; closes June 11, reopens June 13.
Haggen’s purchase of 146 shops represents development of more than 800 percent. It’s fairly a turnaround for the business, which has actually closed 12 stores since personal investment company Comvest Group took a bulk interest in 2011.
To enhance the company’s outlook, Comvest needed to close stores that just weren’t carrying out, Haggen Pacific Northwest CEO John Clougher informed the Puget Noise Company Journal in December.
The Sun talked with Haggen Pacific Southwest CEO Costs Shaner about the business, partnering with local farmers and producers, Haggen’s costs and exactly what makes the chain various from other grocers. His responses have been edited for length and clearness.
Why is Southern Nevada a component of Haggen’s growth?
In order to get Federal Trade Commission approval of their merger, Albertsons and Safeway consented to divest 168 shops in eight states– 111 from Albertsons and 57 from Safeway– and consented to settlements with attorneys general in California, Nevada and Washington. Haggen purchased 146 of those divested shops, including 7 in Nevada. We’re delighted for the chance to make a name and house for ourselves in Nevada!
How does Haggen plan to present itself to clients who might not be familiar with the chain?
We initially spread the word through direct mailers and weekly advertisements to our new neighbors in the stores we’re converting. Beyond that, we maintain an active presence on our social channels (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram). As we gain critical masses in counties, we prepare to launch larger-scale marketing projects. We likewise make use of the in-store experience to share the Haggen story with our clients, from in-store signs, local manufacturer profiles, communications with team members and so on, along with the relationships our shop groups have actually currently established in the neighborhood with local businesses, nonprofit organizations and leaders.
What can Haggen offer Southern Nevada shoppers that other supermarket do not?
At Haggen, our objective is to supply a distinct, easy shopping experience. We provide vital items guests require, specialized items visitors desire, and local products that reflect the community– all at fair, competitive costs. We’re a full-line supermarket with a predisposition toward fresh, quality, organic, local and healthy options so that guests can do all their shopping with us instead of traveling to several shops. Generally, we’re excited about the changes we’re making to boost our suppliers, although there’s just a lot we can accomplish in the 40 hours we’re closed. It will require time to entirely infuse the supplier with the complete Haggen experience. We ensure immediate modifications with our opening– branding and décor modifications, as well as boosted offerings in our fresh departments such as produce, meat/seafood, pastry shop and service deli. But it is a journey, as we like to state, so visitors can required to see continued improvements over the upcoming weeks, months and year.
Haggen proclaims its customer service; how is it different than at other supermarket?
We create heartwarming experiences and enjoyable surprises through genuine and friendly service. Foodies at heart, we are enthusiastic about supplying our visitors with knowledgeable and handy service. Our objective is to go beyond all of our guests’ expectations by providing full service in every department in a timely, professional way. We desire Haggen buyers to feel inspired at the supermarket.
What difficulties will Haggen face in getting in touch with regional farms and manufacturers in Southern Nevada? Exist adequate regional sources to fill Haggen’s need for products?
We’re in the process of negotiating with local farms and manufacturers, and are planning to partner with a large range of Nevada providers. We have actually partnered with Unified Grocers as our main provider in California, Arizona and Nevada. We likewise leverage our size to keep and create relationships with suppliers to obtain top quality items at competitive costs. Likewise, our geographical footprint across California, Arizona and Nevada puts us at an advantage for getting the freshest, top quality perishables onto our racks in a timely way.
How will Haggen’s rates compare with those of other chains in Southern Nevada?
We do routine rate checks against competitors to make certain our prices are reasonable and sensible, and if you compare the very same products at our shop and other supermarket, we think you’ll find that we’re within a couple of cents of each other (occasionally under and sometimes over, depending upon the product).
How does Haggen balance organics and local sourcing with a desire to keep prices on par with those of Albertsons and Vons?
We don’t think these are mutually exclusive. We can leverage our size, geographic footprint and experience to preserve and create relationships with suppliers of getting top quality, in your area sourced items (as well as big-name brands) at competitive rates.
How are Haggen’s offerings various from those of upscale grocers such as Trader Joe’s, Sprouts and Whole Foods?
We’re extremely various from these upscale grocers because we are a full-line supermarket. Haggen offers buyers everything they need under one roofing system– the important, everyday products they’re used to discovering at old-fashioned shops like Vons or Albertsons, specialized items they desire from grocers like Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s, together with in your area appropriate items that reflect the neighborhood.
How comparable is Haggen’s method to Target’s brand-new approach, which has been referred to as Whole Foods with more cost effective costs? Is the Target strategy a source of concern for Haggen?
We’re concentrated on our own approach and launching the very best supermarket we can to satisfy the requirements of the communities we serve.
Are the current closures of multiple Food 4 Less and Fresh & & Easy shops in the Las Vegas Valley cause for concern at Haggen as it takes control of stores in the location?
No disrespect to Food 4 Less or Fresh & & Easy, but we’re not them. We’re certainly familiar with the competitive pressures ahead of us, however Haggen is a brand name and a business that has stood the test of time, serving guests for more than 80 years. By focusing on fresh, in your area sourced items along with everyday huge brands, we supply visitors a relief from the typical headache of grocery shopping. Nowadays, customers want much healthier, easy living, which is precisely what Haggen will certainly offer.
What has changed for Haggen since the recession and Comvest Group’s purchase of a managing interest in the business in 2011?
Considering that personal investment company Comvest Group took a majority interest in the chain in 2011, Haggen has experienced substantial improvement in the business. Comvest offers financial and strategic support, and they’re a large factor our team believe we can be successful.
Is there a point when a market becomes oversaturated with supermarket?
Grocery is certainly a competitive space, however we invite the competition– it simply makes us much better. With our distinct providing, we believe our market position is special in Southern Nevada, positioned as we are between traditional retailers and the super-premium natural and natural merchants.
How smoothly has the conversion and rebranding procedure entered California?
Conversions have actually been going well. We’re on schedule to complete 100 openings in 100 days throughout our Southwest division (that includes Southern California, Arizona and Nevada). This is close to our initial conclusion target of mid-June.