PROFILE

Tony Orlando

Owner, Tony O's Supermarket and Catering

Born and raised in Ashtabula, Ohio, Tony Orlando has 50 years in the food business, having started at four years of age in 1961.

Tony purchased his store in May of 1999 from his father. Through the years, he has acquired extensive knowledge of meat and deli departments. He has consulted with other independents to help their businesses grow.

Tony has served on many Midwest beef councils and also was on the Young Executives Council for the NGA, of which he is a charter member.

Tony graduated from Ohio State University in 1978 with a Bachelors in Business Administration. He is married to wife Maria and has two sons, Michael (19) and Stephen (16). Tony is also the President of the Autistic Children’s Foundation. He loves golfing, casinos and talking shop at NGA.

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  • Posted on: 08/06/2019

    What are the signs of a dying retail business?

    Lots of good points brought up here. As an owner of a small supermarket, I would be gone by now if I did not embrace change. Focusing on perishables has kept us going, and my employees know how to treat our customers better than the big box stores. Even with all the changes, the focus on deep discounts in our area has driven profit margins, falling to where the point of breaking even is a good year. When you live in a very poor area, in just the last 10 years at least 20 new Dollar General stores and two major expansions at the local Aldi have driven out 10 grocery stores, leaving just 3. That is common in rural rust belt towns across our area. Staying sharp on the core values and some key thoughts from Bob will give you a chance to succeed and I’ll take that to heart, as I plan to stick around a few more years. Have a great day everyone.
  • Posted on: 07/26/2019

    Tim Hortons cooks up a test for plant-based eggs

    If it tastes good, and consumers are willing to pay more, then why not? I love real meat, eggs, etc., but as a diabetic, I am glad the industry created the new healthy sweeteners which are great for me and many others. Give consumers choices if you can and see if they respond favorably, and it is a win-win for everyone.
  • Posted on: 07/19/2019

    Is Toys ‘R’ Us just playing around or will Americans buy its new concept store?

    This is the modern day version of a flea market, which are found all over the country at fairgrounds. If they do it right it should do well, and the manufacturers can showcase new, vintage, and the inevitable closeout toys as well. I'd treat it as a pop-up event and increase the number of places going into the Christmas season.
  • Posted on: 07/12/2019

    Will free, same-day pickup give Sam’s Club the edge it has been looking for over Costco?

    Sam’s Club has every product online for sale, with pricing. BOPIS works very well, which for me is quick and they palletize my order, so it gets loaded from their forklift right into my van. All that being said, Costco for consumers who shop the store is a much better place to find amazing high quality products, and if you like fighting crowds, Costco is the place to be. Costco is well behind on online ordering for their food stuff, and prices are not listed online either but that being said, they still outshine Sam’s at store level, and the customers who shop their have more disposable income, which leads to huge transactions. Costco has friendlier associates as well, and that means a lot to me.
  • Posted on: 07/10/2019

    When does marketing cross an ethical line?

    Here are some examples: Airlines that advertise low fares but the actual cost is double or more, as they charge extras for breathing, getting on the plane, bringing luggage, water, early boarding, etc... Hotels that charge $30 to $50 a night for the use or non-use of their tiny treadmills, lousy Wi-Fi, and a pond out back to swim in. All utilities, which have tons of surcharges that a lawyer doesn't understand. Any government agency that takes two hours to answer a phone, along with a wonderful trip to the SSA to speak to their over burdened agents, who lecture you for not providing a blood sample, and your first born, to get any kind of document you might need. I could go on, but many of us experience this every day.
  • Posted on: 07/09/2019

    Will a worker walkout put a kink in Amazon’s Prime Day results?

    Amazon knowing when and where this happens makes it simple to shift more shipping from other outlets. If the workers did this spontaneously with no warning, it would have a much bigger effect for this big sale, and management would be scrambling to get the work out. Any company that is successful and is very large is always a target for workers who want a bigger piece of the pie, and Jeff Bezos being the wealthiest person in the world makes it easier for employees to squabble about their jobs. In the long run, more automation is coming and machines don't need breaks or training lectures, so this will not cause much harm to their 48 hour sell-a-thon.
  • Posted on: 07/08/2019

    Is Walmart at an online crossroads?

    I've been saying this for years. The lust for continued growth in online by the big boys is costing them tons of money, and yet they refuse to charge their customers for BOPIS and free deliveries, hoping guys like me and many other small regional chains will close down. If and when that happens, free delivery will no longer be free. Our industry has the smallest margins on our goods, and for me to do free delivery it will hasten my exit from this business. I charge enough to cover my costs on catering drop offs, which no one complains about. Where this, ends who knows? But to continue losing a billion dollars a year is just plain dumb. Nothing is free, and never has been.
  • Posted on: 06/21/2019

    Did Apple just hand Best Buy the keys to its retailing empire?

    This gives more access to people getting their products and, more importantly, service instead of finding an Apple store in a high rent district 100 miles away. This is good for both companies, and Apple gains a fleet of Geeks to help their product line stay in working order.
  • Posted on: 06/17/2019

    Shake Shack founder says, ‘Do it. Don’t talk about it (sustainability initiatives) until asked.’

    I was just thinking the same thing. Many customers want great tasting dishes, without the lecture. No one I know wants to purposely prepare a lousy dish of food. But no tomatoes in the winter, really? I want my BLT year round and if they won't carry it I'll find a place that will, and most folks that I know feel the same way. The goal is admirable but common sense must rule, and I applaud the no smoking initiative for sure, which again is common sense. Run a very clean establishment, provide great food with great service and you will be successful. If the customer wants to know more then engage with a brief answer and move on.
  • Posted on: 06/12/2019

    What does FedEx’s break with Amazon mean?

    Spot on. The 800 lb. gorilla Amazon is making the same demands as Costco, Walmart, and Target do to their vendors. Then it becomes unprofitable to deal with them, as it is a major profit loser.
  • Posted on: 06/10/2019

    Walmart debuts store-to-fridge fresh food delivery service

    Thanks for throwing the obvious humor into this. Retail grocery is beyond insane, as consumers' demands far exceed profitability for all who are involved. I do home catering, where I drop off the food and provide staff to monitor the party, which includes cleaning the kitchen, taking out trash, and helping the clients with anything reasonable to make the party perfect. We charge for this, but some folks appreciate the help to make it work for their guests -- but nothing creepy going on, just sayin'.
  • Posted on: 06/10/2019

    Walmart debuts store-to-fridge fresh food delivery service

    No one would ever be allowed in my house except my two sons. This concept is fine for those who want it, but the majority of folks will pass. Same day delivery will be very costly, and the race to own the world is on in retail. I'll be very glad when I step down from my business, as insanity is the mantra today. I see more small town grocers leaving as well, since it gets very difficult to do business with these hurdles today. Old fashioned dinosaurs are still around, and I wish them well, as our fraternity is losing members every year.
  • Posted on: 06/05/2019

    Will a city’s ban on tobacco sales catch on across the nation?

    Hollyweird strikes again with this stupid mandate. Next thing they will ban all but the electric cars that drive their super clean city streets. This will never end, and I'm so glad I don't live in California, as it no longer is a viable place to live economically, politically, and regulatorily.
  • Posted on: 06/03/2019

    Will the price of avocados make Americans say enough to Trump’s tariffs?

    I guess I'm in the minority here, and yes there is a crisis at the border in spite of what the new leaders in the Congress say to the contrary. Ignoring it will not make the problem resolve itself, and no other previous administrations would touch the issue. My nephew lives in Texas serving in the military, and says it is a disaster on the border. I'll take his word for it, as he deals with it daily. It is very dangerous for their safety as well.
  • Posted on: 06/03/2019

    Will the price of avocados make Americans say enough to Trump’s tariffs?

    For those who travel, please tell me if they can march into another country without proper ID and a reason to be there? Of course not, and why should we allow free reign on getting into our country with no consequences? This problem has been ignored too long, and we as Americans better wake up to the fact that things need to be secured for our safety, and if Mexico does not want to cooperate then the heat on them will continue. I'm sure many disagree, but if every other country has borders that are strictly enforced, than it is about time we do the same. Paying a little extra for avocados is the price of our security.

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