After more than a decade of recorded losses, Kroger Co. will close its store at 3917 S. Seventh St. Road before the end of this month.
Tim McGurk, public affairs manager for Kroger’s Louisville division, told Insider Louisville in an email that the Southland Terrace store will shut for good at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 29.
“We are in the business to open stores and make them thrive. Unfortunately, this store is trending the opposite way, and we simply see no way for that to be reversed,” McGurk said in the email.
That Kroger has lost money each year for the last decade. During the past five years, the 50-year-old Southland Terrace Kroger recorded losses of $4.3 million.
“Projections show that this will get significantly worse next year and beyond,” McGurk said in the email.
Nearly 70 percent of Southland Terrace customers already do some grocery shopping at other area Kroger stores, he added, noting that there are three other Kroger stores within 3 miles. That includes a new Kroger Marketplace store on Dixie Highway. Customers without their own cars can take a TARC bus directly from Southland Terrace to the new Kroger on Dixie Highway.
Kroger will offer the 108 employees at the Southland Terrace store the chance to transfer to a different location, and they will continue to receive the same wages and benefits at their new store, McGurk said in the email.
In a follow-up interview, McGurk told IL that there wasn’t any one reason that the store wasn’t profitable and that the company had invested “several million dollars” in the Southland Terrace location in an effort to turn things around.
The bottom line continued to get worse and was expected to keep declining in 2017 since Kroger opened the Marketplace store on Dixie Highway. “We did see a pretty strong migration of customers from Southland Terrace to the Marketplace store,” he said.
No other Kroger stores are in danger of closing, McGurk said.
Kroger is the predominant grocery chain in Louisville, with more than 25 stores in the city, according to its website.
The Cincinnati-based grocery store chain is in the middle of three-year plan to invest $150 million in its Louisville stores, many of which Kroger is transforming into Marketplace stores, which sell groceries as well as clothes, home decor, small appliances, toys and other household items.