Grocers Try to Round Up Houston Market

Nov 18, 2002
George Anderson

By George Anderson

Houston’s $6.4 billion grocery market is the site of an old-fashioned retailer shootout, says the Houston (TX) Chronicle.

Long-time area retailers such as Kroger and Randalls as well as relative newcomers such as H.E.B. and Wal-Mart are vying to capture a greater share of this diverse and growing market.

Each of the key players is following a familiar formula.

Wal-Mart wants to own the low-price position and it is operating both Supercenters and Neighborhood Markets in Houston.

Kroger is the current share leader with a consumer value marketing position. It purchased 16 Albertson’s stores when that chain decided to leave Houston and focus its attention elsewhere.

The native Texan chains have strong recognition, although there are concerns that while San Antonio-based H.E.B. is on the ascent, the Safeway-owned Randalls may be at a disadvantage due to its parent’s cost-cutting.

Moderator’s Comment: What do you think will happen
in the Houston grocery market? What do the individual players need to do to

Gainers: Wal-Mart and H.E.B.

Losers: Kroger and Safeway [George
Anderson – Moderator

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