By now it is public information that Piggly Wiggly Carolina will be selling many stores to strategic buyers. For most of us in the Pig family, this is a bittersweet development.
While our retail team members in these stores all will have opportunities to continue their careers with the new owners, once you have Piggly Wiggly in your blood, it is hard to get it out. But, I know these fine folks will do well.
The buyers of these stores are not only getting some of the most friendly, service-oriented, community-minded people around, but also they are getting some of the best individual folks it has been my pleasure to know, and beside whom it has been my honor to work.
Piggly Wiggly Carolina will continue to operate as an owner of fewer retail stores, and we will continue to serve the 30 or so independently owned Piggly Wiggly Stores in our market area. We’ll be a smaller company — but we will be financially strong.
Any major action has positive outcomes and, usually, some negative side effects. That is true of the action we are taking selling these locations. Unfortunately, one of the most negative side effects is that there will be no Piggly Wiggly stores remaining in the immediate Charleston area.
When Joe Newton, Jr., founded our company in 1947 in Charleston, I am sure he did not envision the supermarket business becoming the battle of the titans that it has become. And never in my memory has consolidation in the grocery industry been so widespread. However, this created an opportunity for our company that benefitted our retail employees and our employee-stockholders who own our company through an ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan).
As we take this action which will transition our stores to these new banners in October, we continue to focus on our customers and our communities.
We thank Charleston for the loyalty many of you have shown us as shoppers and supporters over these many years. And, in return, it has been our true privilege to support as best we can the Charleston area community and many others in which we do business.
Our headquarters will continue to be based in Charleston, a few blocks from the Ashley River. Our leadership team will continue to be a part of the Charleston community. And, we will continue to have The Pig in our blood.
Thank you, Charleston, for honoring us with many years of support. You have our sincerest gratitude as we move on to this next phase of Piggly Wiggly Carolina.
David R. Schools
President and CEO
Piggly Wiggly Carolina
Croghan Spur Road