Oh, here we go again. Every time I write about Ukrop’s my blog is overloaded. Well, I finally have a legitimate update for you. We’ll start with Ukrop’s profits. For the first time this year, the company posted a quarterly loss. The chain lost $1.4 million in the third quarter. That would seem like bad news, but it’s not. The company posted decent earnings in the first two quarters… almost two million in profit. Which means, Ukrop’s is still in the black, just as it heads into the biggest quarter of the year. I talked to VCU marketing professor David Urban who says other chains like Whole Foods, Trader Joes, Kroger and Food Lion have been slowly chipping away at Ukrop’s but we still won’t know how much until after the fourth quarter. The company, of course had no comment for me today. And I want to give a shout out to Richmond Biz Sense, who first broke the story and has done a bang up job staying on top of the Ukrop’s Saga.
We learned today that a food fight is underway in Carytown. Kroger has declared war on Ukrop’s and is even copying a long-standing tradition. The Carytown Kroger has new carts and is now sending bag boys to your car with your groceries. The store is also hoping to expand its prepared food selection and plans to lease the CVS next door so it can expand. David Urban says Kroger “smells blood in the water” an is getting aggressive. Kroger didn’t call me back today to comment.
As for the search for a buyer?? Nothing new to report. I’ll keep digging around. Promise!