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  • Tony's Fresh Market

    Post #1 - April 20th, 2022, 11:39 am
    Post #1 - April 20th, 2022, 11:39 am Post #1 - April 20th, 2022, 11:39 am
    Tony's Fresh Market bought by private-equity firm reported by Crain's Chicago Business. Story is also reported by Chicago Tribune.

    I don't see a dedicated thread about Tony's either with its current name or previously as Tony's Finer Foods, so I am starting a new one.

    There are detail differences between the two stories, which are both behind pay walls. The headlines may be slightly misleading as some of the current ownership will be stockholders in the new entity. Whether this is good or bad will remain to be seen; probably some of both.

    Quote from Crain's:
    For Tony’s, the sale means a transition away from decades of family ownership. Italian immigrants Tony Ingraffia and Domenico Gambino started the company in 1979, opening the first location on Fullerton Avenue and Central Park avenues.

    The founding family will continue to partner with Apollo in management roles and as shareholders, said Partner Andrew Jhawar. Founder Tony Ingraffia will step back from day-to-day operations and serve on the board. His son will continue as CEO.


    Further expansion seems likely. Now there are 18 stores with three more under development.

    Quote from Tribune:
    Ingraffia said three new stores were in the pipeline, including one in Chicago and one store each in Joliet and Schaumburg.
  • Post #2 - April 20th, 2022, 12:01 pm
    Post #2 - April 20th, 2022, 12:01 pm Post #2 - April 20th, 2022, 12:01 pm
    It will be interesting to see how it evolves with new ownership.
    Tony's has been a great source for international ingredients (esp. Mexican at the Arlington Heights store), reasonable meat prices, and chile arbol salsa now that there's no Garden Fresh stores within reasonable distance from me. Ever since Mariano's got Krogerized, they've been our #2 store.

    I'd hate to see it get more generic and corporatized.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #3 - April 20th, 2022, 1:28 pm
    Post #3 - April 20th, 2022, 1:28 pm Post #3 - April 20th, 2022, 1:28 pm
    Here is the contents of the entire article from Crains:
    Tony’s Fresh Market has been acquired by New York private-equity company Apollo Global Management.

    The purchase digs Apollo deeper into Chicago’s grocery world. The firm invested $1.75 billion into Jewel-Osco parent Albertsons in 2020. Outside of Chicago, it invests in Sprouts Farmers Market and other grocery stores.

    For Tony’s, the sale means a transition away from decades of family ownership. Italian immigrants Tony Ingraffia and Domenico Gambino started the company in 1979, opening the first location on Fullerton Avenue and Central Park avenues. The two worked 12 hours a day for their first decade in business, according to the store’s website.

    Tony’s now has 18 Chicago-area locations, with several more in development, according to the news release.

    “My family has been feeding our communities for generations and are incredibly excited to partner with Apollo to build upon that legacy of fresh and healthy food, at an affordable price and delivered with respect to the many cultures of our customers,” CEO Frank Ingraffia said in the news release.
    The founding family will continue to partner with Apollo, according to the news release. Apollo Partner Andrew Jhawar said in a statement that Tony’s has “built an incredible reputation in Chicago,” and is known for high-quality and international food options.

    “Having spent more than 20 years leading Apollo’s private-equity investments in grocery and retail, I firmly believe the business is poised for strong organic growth,” he said. “Together we see additional opportunities to support Tony’s through go-to-market execution, customer loyalty programs, e-commerce and more.”
    Representatives from Tony’s and Apollo were not immediately available for comment.
  • Post #4 - April 20th, 2022, 5:33 pm
    Post #4 - April 20th, 2022, 5:33 pm Post #4 - April 20th, 2022, 5:33 pm
    Well, I'm sure it's good for the sellers. But huge conglomerates always worry me.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #5 - April 20th, 2022, 8:22 pm
    Post #5 - April 20th, 2022, 8:22 pm Post #5 - April 20th, 2022, 8:22 pm
    No paywall = https://www.supermarketnews.com/retail- ... esh-market
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #6 - April 21st, 2022, 7:42 am
    Post #6 - April 21st, 2022, 7:42 am Post #6 - April 21st, 2022, 7:42 am
    The two recent Tony's around here (Round Lake Beach, long-shuttered Garden Fresh, and Waukegan, former SuperFresh) already seem a little more corporatized than Tony's did 5 years ago. They're not bad, but selection seems not great - especially at the Waukegan store - and prices kinda high. With the exception of the big selection of local tortillas.
  • Post #7 - April 21st, 2022, 1:52 pm
    Post #7 - April 21st, 2022, 1:52 pm Post #7 - April 21st, 2022, 1:52 pm
    tjr, your report seems consistent with my admittedly limited experience. I recently started getting weekly flyers for Tony's in Round Lake Beach--about 10 miles away, vs about 12 miles to the one in Arlington Heights and 14 miles to the one in Waukegan, both of which I didn't know existed, so thanks to you and JoelF for that info. I have very little reason to go to Round Lake Beach and struggle to find someplace to stop for lunch or other shopping or errands when I do.

    From what I see in the weekly flyers, meat on sale at Tony's in RLB is often just "Inspected" grade, and the other sale prices aren't sales. I will check out the Waukegan and Arlington Heights Tony's if I'm nearby sometime--I am always on the lookout for Italian grocery items and didn't know Tony's was founded by an Italian family---but unless they offer better-quality meat and more competitive prices on other things, it's not going to be a draw for me.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"

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