Publix Expands Organic Grocery Concept GreenWise Market into Georgia and South Carolina
ATLANTA, GA - Publix is bringing its Sunshine State-based GreenWise Markets to Georgia with its latest plans for expansion. Organic, natural, and specialty foods store—headquartered in Lakeland, Florida—is looking at sites in the Peach State, according to Atlanta Business Chronicle, with plans to unveil three to five stores in the metro Atlanta area. In addition to Atlanta locations, the company has three stores in the works—Tallahassee and Lakeland, Florida, and Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.
This will be a major move for the retail chain, which currently operates three locations of its niche store format and hasn’t opened a new GreenWise Markets location since 2008—all three can be found in Florida.
While yet to be confirmed by the company, the news source relays that one of the first store locations would be at East Cobb, a new project set for Sandy Plains and Shallowford roads that Atlanta-based Fuqua Development is spearheading. GreenWise could potentially take the space that Mountain View Elementary School formerly held. Other than this first spot, parent company Publix is looking at other Atlanta locations for its GreenWise Markets, where it could compete with Whole Foods Market and Sprouts Farmers Market.
“Publix launching GreenWise in Atlanta could be a game changer,” Executive Vice President of Retail for Commercial Real Estate firm JLL John Bemis said, according to the news source. “They seem to have a good handle on the concept. And, their launch should be smoother because it comes with the Publix name recognition.”
In a unique strategy, GreenWise would be positioned a little south of a Publix at the potential East Cobb location. The market’s footprint will be around 25,000 square feet, while the average for parent Publix is almost double that at 44,000 square feet.
“The target market for GreenWise is those areas that have a strong Publix presence already,” Senior Director of Retail Tenant Services for Franklin Street Real Estate's Atlanta location's Greg Eisenman said. “GreenWise could function as a complementary destination for a core Publix location, helping to spread out customer density in their busiest markets.”
The news source relays that Publix announced a relaunch of GreenWise in March of last year, which would consist of different merchandise than Publix holds and a wine bar with prepared foods.
“We think foodies and health-conscious customers alike will love what the store will offer,” Publix’s Senior Vice President of Retail Operations Kevin Murphy said last March.
The Southeast could see up to 100 GreenWise stores, with plans for more expansion in the works, the news source expresses.
“We don’t really know what will happen in the grocery industry a year or five years from now. Change in the grocery business, as part of retail all together, due to technology and changing consumer patterns is happening so quickly,” Eisenman said. “I’m excited to see a big company like Publix believe in the market enough to make this significant investment.”
How will a GreenWise Markets expansion shape the retail landscape in the Southeast and beyond? AndNowUKnow will keep you updated.