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Albertsons Buys United Supermarkets-What You Might See

United Supermarkets which has headquarters right here in Lubbock Texas has been purchased by Albertsons. Our friends at Everything Lubbock were told that there would be “no name change and no impact”  With all due respect, “we’re not changing anything” is the first lie that corporate people always tell.  Some things will no doubt change and a lot of those changes are likely to be positive.  My predictions next.

Keep in mind, these are all predictions!

*Watch for the “store brand” to change.  You’re used to seeing “Food Club”.  Albertsons has a brand called “Essential Everyday”.  Albertsons also brands some of their meat as “Steakhouse Choice”.

*Look for new national brands. Albertsons has an even greater ability to buy in bulk, which means some new national brands could make their debut.

*Look for shrinking local choices.  This is a tough one and hopefully it won’t come to pass, but it’s harder for local or regional options to get shelf space on a major supermarkets shelves.

*Look for an eventual name change.  Albertsons operates stores under a lot of names, but ALL companies eventually say “the check with it” and brand their stores under one simple name.  It only makes sense, you want people who shop at Albertsons in Dallas to shop at Albertsons when they are in Lubbock and vice-versa.  This one could take years, they may wait for a bunch of signs to burn out, but it seems to happen with all companies.

*Look for competition to come to town.  United had/has that hometown feel.  That goes away when they become part of a larger chain. Competitors will see this as a weakness they can exploit and possibly look at coming to town.  It’s a well known fact that H.E.B. has property in town that they haven’t used yet.

*Look for the local United Corporate offices to close.  There’s just no reason to have a bunch of suits here in Lubbock when they can kick all of those jobs up to the home office.

*Look for prices to stay the same, or even drop a little.  This is kind of why I don’t understand that corporate buyers don’t come in and say that they can ‘make things better’.  Albertsons buying power was already great and it just got better.  Buying power means cheaper prices for them which means cheaper prices for you.  They’ll probably use this opportunity to save you some money to ingratiate themselves to the Lubbock market.

All in all, as a shopper, these changes are most often good.  And if I’m wrong about everything and everything stays the same, well that’s good too.  Welcome (back) to Lubbock Albertsons.

 

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