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Green Zebra contemplates expansion

Green Zebra Grocery, a Portland, Ore.-based health-focused convenience store, hopes to open at least two more locations in the next few months — if it can raise the money — according to published reports.

The company — operated by Lisa Sedlar, the former CEO of New Seasons Market, also of Portland — opened its first store 14 months ago. Plans for a second location at the end of 2013 fell through, and plans for another store, originally scheduled to open last summer, have been delayed awaiting completion of financing, Sedlar told OregonLive.com.

“As soon as we raise the money we’ll go full-speed ahead,” she was quoted as saying.

The original store is 5,600 square feet. The second one will be 6,400 square feet, with added space for grab-and-go items, the reports said.

Supermarket News

Green Zebra contemplates expansion

Green Zebra Grocery, a Portland, Ore.-based health-focused convenience store, hopes to open at least two more locations in the next few months — if it can raise the money — according to published reports.

The company — operated by Lisa Sedlar, the former CEO of New Seasons Market, also of Portland — opened its first store 14 months ago. Plans for a second location at the end of 2013 fell through, and plans for another store, originally scheduled to open last summer, have been delayed awaiting completion of financing, Sedlar told OregonLive.com.

“As soon as we raise the money we’ll go full-speed ahead,” she was quoted as saying.

The original store is 5,600 square feet. The second one will be 6,400 square feet, with added space for grab-and-go items, the reports said.

Supermarket News

Green Zebra contemplates expansion

Green Zebra Grocery, a Portland, Ore.-based health-focused convenience store, hopes to open at least two more locations in the next few months — if it can raise the money — according to published reports.

The company — operated by Lisa Sedlar, the former CEO of New Seasons Market, also of Portland — opened its first store 14 months ago. Plans for a second location at the end of 2013 fell through, and plans for another store, originally scheduled to open last summer, have been delayed awaiting completion of financing, Sedlar told OregonLive.com.

“As soon as we raise the money we’ll go full-speed ahead,” she was quoted as saying.

The original store is 5,600 square feet. The second one will be 6,400 square feet, with added space for grab-and-go items, the reports said.

Supermarket News

Green Zebra contemplates expansion

Green Zebra Grocery, a Portland, Ore.-based health-focused convenience store, hopes to open at least two more locations in the next few months — if it can raise the money — according to published reports.

The company — operated by Lisa Sedlar, the former CEO of New Seasons Market, also of Portland — opened its first store 14 months ago. Plans for a second location at the end of 2013 fell through, and plans for another store, originally scheduled to open last summer, have been delayed awaiting completion of financing, Sedlar told OregonLive.com.

“As soon as we raise the money we’ll go full-speed ahead,” she was quoted as saying.

The original store is 5,600 square feet. The second one will be 6,400 square feet, with added space for grab-and-go items, the reports said.

Supermarket News

Green Zebra contemplates expansion

Green Zebra Grocery, a Portland, Ore.-based health-focused convenience store, hopes to open at least two more locations in the next few months — if it can raise the money — according to published reports.

The company — operated by Lisa Sedlar, the former CEO of New Seasons Market, also of Portland — opened its first store 14 months ago. Plans for a second location at the end of 2013 fell through, and plans for another store, originally scheduled to open last summer, have been delayed awaiting completion of financing, Sedlar told OregonLive.com.

“As soon as we raise the money we’ll go full-speed ahead,” she was quoted as saying.

The original store is 5,600 square feet. The second one will be 6,400 square feet, with added space for grab-and-go items, the reports said.

Supermarket News

Green Zebra contemplates expansion

Green Zebra Grocery, a Portland, Ore.-based health-focused convenience store, hopes to open at least two more locations in the next few months — if it can raise the money — according to published reports.

The company — operated by Lisa Sedlar, the former CEO of New Seasons Market, also of Portland — opened its first store 14 months ago. Plans for a second location at the end of 2013 fell through, and plans for another store, originally scheduled to open last summer, have been delayed awaiting completion of financing, Sedlar told OregonLive.com.

“As soon as we raise the money we’ll go full-speed ahead,” she was quoted as saying.

The original store is 5,600 square feet. The second one will be 6,400 square feet, with added space for grab-and-go items, the reports said.

Supermarket News

Green Zebra contemplates expansion

Green Zebra Grocery, a Portland, Ore.-based health-focused convenience store, hopes to open at least two more locations in the next few months — if it can raise the money — according to published reports.

The company — operated by Lisa Sedlar, the former CEO of New Seasons Market, also of Portland — opened its first store 14 months ago. Plans for a second location at the end of 2013 fell through, and plans for another store, originally scheduled to open last summer, have been delayed awaiting completion of financing, Sedlar told OregonLive.com.

“As soon as we raise the money we’ll go full-speed ahead,” she was quoted as saying.

The original store is 5,600 square feet. The second one will be 6,400 square feet, with added space for grab-and-go items, the reports said.

Supermarket News

Costco contemplates more international expansion

As Costco Wholesale Corp. continues its international expansion, it is contemplating warehouse opportunities in China but is not yet ready to move on them, Richard A. Galanti, EVP and CFO, told analysts Wednesday.

“We recognize it’s a giant market, and every few years senior management goes over there and looks around,” he said.

“While we’re confident about what we do, and we’re very hands-on, we’ve got a lot of things going on in a lot of directions. We know somebody’s going to get there first, but when other people have gotten other places first, we do fine when we come in, so [expansion to China] will happen at some point, though I don’t know when. But we’re not ready yet.”

Although U.S. expansion will continue, the percentage of growth overseas will continue to rise, he said. “We are probably right at the mid-point of trending from the majority of locations in the U.S. to less than half in the U.S.,” he explained.

Expansion will continue in existing international markets, Galanti said, “and all of Europe is certainly an opportunity for us.”

Costco hopes to open a second location in Spain in the second half of fiscal 2016, he noted, “and we’re still fighting to get our first unit open in France.”

Galanti made his remarks during a conference call to discuss financial results for the first quarter ended Nov. 23. Net income for the 12-week quarter rose 16.7% to $ 496 million, while sales increased 7% to $ 26.3 billion and comparable sales, excluding gasoline, were up 7%, with average transaction size up 2.5% and average frequency up 4.5%.

Food and sundries, candy, deli and spirits were “relative standouts” during the quarter, Galanti noted.

Organic foods have risen to $ 3 billion annually, from about $ 1.4 billion two years ago, he said, “and it’s growing. I can’t tell you how quickly it will grow, but it’s certainly growing faster than our top-line overall.”

E-commerce sales were up 20% and represent just under 3% of total sales, he pointed out.


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Among Costco’s e-commerce activities is a partnership with Google Express in six U.S. markets — the San Francisco Bay Area, where testing started 10 months ago, plus Los Angeles and New York, with Chicago, Washington D.C. and Boston added in October.  “It’s too early to tell completely but we are seeing increased overall spending, and Google has been a good partner to work with,” Galanti said.

The company opened eight new warehouses during the quarter — six in the U.S., its seventh location in Australia and its second location in Leon, Mexico. Galanti said Costco has no openings scheduled for the second quarter, with a handful set for the third quarter and 20 openings planned for the fourth quarter for a total of approximately 30 new locations for the fiscal year, compared with 29 openings in fiscal 2014.

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Mi Pueblo contemplates reorganization or liquidation

Mi Pueblo Food Centers, San Jose, Calif., said Wednesday that unless the U.S. bankruptcy court approves its reorganization plan before the end of May, the company might have to liquidate.

According to a court filing, the 21-store chain said its reorganization plan, including capital infusions by a third party, “is currrently the best measure of [its] value and provides … the best chances of a successful reorganization.”


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Mi Pueblo said it hopes to obtain approval for the plan on May 14, which involves$ 56 million in exit financing from a private equity firm in return for a 50% stake in the company.

Complicating the timing is a requirement that the chain post a $ 7.5 million letter of credit to support its worker’s compensation policy by June. If Mi Pueblo is unable to acquire sufficient funds to post the letter-of-credit, it said in court filings, then it will incur additional legal and other administrative costs that could result in “a cessation of operations that will necessarily occur after June 1.”

“Any delay in the consummation of the [reorganization] plan may have a negative impact on the operations and financial performance of Mi Pueblo, including higher administrative costs and its inability to meet certain income forecasts. The alternative to the plan is a liquidation … [in which case] the recovery to creditors is very uncertain but is almost certainly worse than that contemplated in the proposed plan.”

According to a Mi Puelblo spokeswoman, “The plan submitted to the federal bankruptcy court positions Mi Pueblo well to move forward and to refocus on its core mission — to provide our customers with authentic products and services … While there is still work to accomplish in the near term, we remain very confident we will emerge from bankruptcy as a stronger and better capitalized company.”

The private equity firm committed to helping Mi Pueblo is Victory Park Capital, a Chicago-based firm that invests in middle-market companies, which the court document said is offering enough financing to allow the chain to erase its debts and continue operations.

Mi Pueblo filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July, citing a dispute with Wells Fargo, its primary lender, which had reportedly sought to change the terms of its loans to the chain after it became concerned about the chain’s debt-to-credit ratio and its forecast on revenues.

The chain spokeswoman said at the time, “It’s not an issue with payroll, and it’s not an issue with sales. Mi Pueblo is dealing with a very difficult creditor. We’re at an impasse, and we’re seeking protection from the court. We’re working very, very hard to reorganize and come out stronger.”

The bankruptcy also followed by several months an audit of the chain’s employees by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Service , which resulted in the company having the let 80% of its work force go.

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Mi Pueblo contemplates liquidation

Mi Pueblo Food Centers, San Jose, Calif., said Wednesday that unless the U.S. bankruptcy court approves its reorganization plan before the end of May, the company might have to liquidate.

According to a court filing, the 21-store chain said its reorganization plan, including capital infusions by a third party, “is currrently the best measure of [its] value and provides … the best chances of a successful reorganization.”


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Follow @SN_News for updates throughout the day.


If Mi Pueblo cannot emerge from Chapter 11 by the end of May — and if it is unable to acquire sufficient funds to post cash to secure a $ 7.5-million letter-of-credit to support its workers’ compensation insurance policy — it will incur additional legal and other administrative costs, which could result in “a cessation of operations that will necessarily occur after June 1,” the company said in the document.

“Any delay in the consummation of the [reorganization] plan may have a negative impact on the operations and financial performance of Mi Pueblo, including higher administrative costs and its inability to meet certain income forecasts. The alternative to the plan is a liquidation … [in which case] the recovery to creditors is very uncertain but is almost certainly worse than that contemplated in the proposed plan.”

The third party committed to helping Mi Pueblo is Victory Park Capital, a Chicago-based firm that invests in middle-market companies, which the court document said is offering enough financing to allow the chain to erase its debts and continue operations.

Mi Pueblo filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July, citing a dispute with Wells Fargo, its primary lender, which had reportedly sought to change the terms of its loans to the chain after it became concerned about the chain’s debt-to-credit ratio and its forecast on revenues.

A chain spokeswoman said at the time, “It’s not an issue with payroll, and it’s not an issue with sales. Mi Pueblo is dealing with a very difficult creditor. We’re at an impasse, and we’re seeking protection from the court. We’re working very, very hard to reorganize and come out stronger.”

The bankruptcy also followed by several months an audit of the chain’s employees by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Service , which resulted in the company having the let 80% of its work force go.

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