Wakefern Food Corp. reported a record retail sales level of $15.7 billion for the 53-week fiscal year ending October 3, 2015, a 6.7 percent increase from the prior year, and $12.8 billion in Wakefern wholesale sales, the Keasbey, NJ-based wholesale food cooperative announced at its annual shareholders meeting held on October 29, in East Brunswick, NJ.
Chairman Joe Colalillo, owner of five ShopRite stores, and president Joe Sheridan addressed the approximately 900 people at Hilton in East Brunswick.
“Our customers have different expectations of us today, and we need to meet those expectations. We are going to deliver that customer experience by uniting around our purpose and bringing our values to life in our stores,” Colalillo noted.
Colalillo also announced the retirement of two longtime members from Wakefern’s board of directors: Steve Ravitz, president of Supermarkets of Cherry Hill, and Kenneth Capano, president and CEO of Five Star Supermarkets.
“We thank Steve Ravitz and Ken Capano for their decades of service, wisdom and expertise on the board. Both men will remain active in their own companies and with the cooperative,” said Colalillo, who also welcomed new board members Neil Greenstein, president of Brookdale ShopRite/ShopRite of Newark, and Marshall Klein, VP and COO of Klein’s ShopRite of Maryland.
“We look forward to working with our new members and the entire board as we shape our future successes,” added Colalillo.
“Our world is rapidly evolving and we are transforming with it,” said Sheridan. “We’re optimizing our brick and mortar experience, accelerating our digital platforms and engaging our associates to deliver the ultimate customer experience.”
Also at the annual meeting, Wakefern shareholders elected to the board of directors: Joseph S. Colalillo as chairman and CEO; Larri Wolfson, Irv Glass and Dominick J. Romano as vice chairmen; Lawrence Inserra, Jr., treasurer; Jeffrey Brown, assistant treasurer; Richard Saker, secretary; Ned Gladstein and Nico Sumas, assistant secretaries; as well as Robert Clare, Jordan Coe, Lawrence Collins, Sr., Harry Garafalo, Jon Greenfield, Charles Infusino, Vincent Lo Curcio III, Leonard Sitar, Richard Tully and Richard McMenamin.
Joe Sheridan was also re-elected as president and COO.
During the past 12 months, five new ShopRite stores and four PriceRite stores opened.
Additionally, the large and very successful wholesaler plans to open 15 stores, most of which will debut in the next six months. Fourteen of those stores are former A&P and Pathmark units acquired during the recent A&P auction. Those supermarkets (all ShopRites unless otherwise noted) are located in: College Point, NY (to be owned by Glass Gardens- scheduled to open on December 15); Veterans Road, Staten Island (Mannix-scheduled to open January 16); Lagrangeville, NY (SRS – scheduled to open March 16): Aramingo Ave., Philadelphia, PA (Ammons – scheduled to open March 16 as a member-owned PriceRite); Wyncote, PA (Brown’s – scheduled to open March 16 as a member owned Fresh Grocer); Upper Darby, PA (scheduled to open March 16 as a Pat Burns’ owned Fresh Grocer); Brookhaven (scheduled to open March 16 as a Pat Burns’ owned Fresh Grocer); Glenolden, PA (Collins –scheduled to open March 16); Monument Ave, Philadelphia, PA (Brown’s – scheduled to open March 16 as a member owned Fresh Grocer); Bethpage, NY (Food Parade – scheduled to open March 16); New Hyde Park, NY (Food Parade – scheduled to open March 16); Deer Park, NY (Thompson – scheduled to open March 16); West Oregon Ave., Philadelphia, PA (Colligas – scheduled to open April 16) and Danbury, CT (Grade A- scheduled to open in the spring of 2016).
Additionally, Wakefern members are slated to open a new ShopRite at Bridge and Harbison Sts. in Philadelphia, PA (Ammons) and Inserra will open its’ second member-owned PriceRite in Paterson, NJ in the spring of 2017.