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Jewel Faces Pressure By New Competitors

The exit of the Dominick’s grocery chain has left many large grocery retail spaces open for the picking. Mariano’s and Whole Foods have made plans to take over many of these previous stores and increase their presence in Chicago. What does this mean for the grocery chain Jewel Osco that seems to be hanging on by a thread? The grocery chain was acquired by Albertsons from Supervalu last year, and has made many executive-level hires recently which affirms that changes are on the horizon. The store will have to make major changes and upgrades to keep up with the competition that is moving into many neighborhoods in Chicago. Jewel could be in trouble if they don’t make upgrades, revisions, and stay competitive in the grocery chain market that is currently open for the taking.

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One of the new hires is  President Shane Sampson. He admitted that Jewel has a long way to go, but is extremely confident that Jewel can stay in the game with improvements to their produce and their customer service.  “We’re on a journey to be the finest supermarket in the United States. That’s our goal.” Jewel will be investing $100 million in remodeling current locations and redesigning projects within the stores. In December, Jewel completed a redesign of 18 stores and has undergone plans to upgrade 25 more stores in the future.

The five former Dominick’s stores that Jewel-Osco plans to remodel and reopen include one in Rogers Park and one in Cabrini Green that were on the Chicago Mayor’s office Grocery Store Task Force priority list.

New locations that have been confirmed to open are-  1763 Howard Street; 424 W. Division in Chicago; 3243 S. 115th St in Merrionette Park; 800 NW Highway in Fox River Grove and 345 S. Rand Road in Lake Zurich. There has not yet been a confirmation on the dates for these locations to open. A few Mariano’s have already opened, including the location in Edgewater. With signs in many of the Whole Foods locations announcing ‘Opening in 2015’, Jewel Osco has a limited time line to work with in keeping up with their rivals!


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