Former Ladson Bi-Lo (copy)

The former Bi-Lo grocery store in the Ladson area of North Charleston will become the Charleston region's sixth Piggly Wiggly supermarket. File/Warren L. Wise/Staff

A Charleston-based, independent Piggly Wiggly grocery store owner is adding two more of the iconic supermarkets to his portfolio.

Lynn and Cindy Willard of Mount Pleasant recently completed the purchase of two former Bi-Lo stores in Ladson and Mullins and is transforming them into Piggly Wiggly stores. They already own nine other Pig locations throughout eastern South Carolina.

The rebranded stores — at 9616 Highway 78 in Ladson and 208 E. McIntyre St. in Mullins — will open at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

The Willards' other Piggly Wiggly holdings include two in Florence and one each in Georgetown, Hampton, Hanahan, Moncks Corner, North Charleston, St. George and Surfside Beach.

New Hampshire-based C&S Wholesale Grocers owns the Piggly Wiggly brand and supplies stores in South Carolina and Georgia. All Piggly Wiggly supermarkets in South Carolina are now independently owned after the dissolution of Charleston-based Piggly Wiggly Carolina began earlier this decade.

"Our independent owners are excited to grow their existing store count and expand the Piggly Wiggly brand in the Southeast," said John Owens, vice president of marketing and merchandising in the Southeast for C&S Wholesale Grocers.

C&S now serves 51 Piggly Wiggly supermarkets in South Carolina and southeast Georgia.

The two Bi-Lo stores closed in April as part of the bankruptcy reorganization of parent company Southeastern Grocers of Jacksonville.

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In all, the company shuttered 19 stores in South Carolina, including four in the Charleston region.

Southeastern Grocers also sold its Bi-Lo store on Skylark Drive in West Ashley to independent Piggly Wiggly owner David Smith of Goose Creek. The rebranded store opened in early May.

The Charleston region will now have six Piggly Wiggly or Price Wise-branded stores. 

Reach Warren L. Wise at 843-937-5524. Follow him on Twitter @warrenlancewise.