Careers at BI-LO, LLC
BI-LO LLC (“BI-LO”) seeks to provide consumers across the US with high-quality and affordable grocery and pharmacy products.
BI-LO traces its roots back to 1961, when former Winn-Dixie executive Frank Outlaw (“Outlaw”) acquired four grocery stores in Greenville, South Carolina from retail chain Wrenn and Syracuse. The stores operated initially under the brand name Wrenn & Outlaw, but changed its name to BI-LO in 1963. The name was chosen by way of in-company contest, which was won by Outlaw’s secretary.
Outlaw sold BI-LO to Dutch retailer Ahold in 1977, which expanded the company’s reach through several corporate acquisitions. Ahold later sold BI-LO to Lone Star Funds in 2005, which began selling off many of the company’s assets. In 2009, BI-LO filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, having been affected significantly by the 2008 financial crash. The company’s stores, however, continued to operate, and 2010, following several debt deals, the company officially emerged from bankruptcy.
The BI-LO chain now operates as a unit of US grocery store operator Southeastern Grocers (formerly BI-LO Holdings).
Business model of BI-LO, LLC
BI-LO primarily targets consumers seeking to purchase everyday items – such as milk, bread, meat, and frozen foods – at low prices and from convenient locations. The company’s stores are targeted primarily at the following consumer demographics:
- Low and Middle-income families, including households with an annual income of $30,000 or less who prioritise value and price over brand names when purchasing general household items;
- Working Class Professionals, including lower income professionals, millennials, and other budget-conscious consumers.
BI-LO is a regional supermarket chain that serves customers across South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia. The bulk of the company’s customers are residents of South Carolina, where the company has its roots.
BI-LO provides value to its customers in the following ways:
- Strong Regional History and Reputation – BI-LO has established itself as a popular, reliable retailer of grocery and everyday items in the south eastern US, with a history of good service dating back to the mid-twentieth century;
- Broad Range of Products – BI-LO offers its customers a broad range of products, focusing primarily on everyday staples, such as meats, dairy products, frozen foods, and cleaning supplies, as well as pharmacy products;
- Affordable Prices and Value – BI-LO seeks to offer its customers products at affordable prices, tailoring its offerings to budget conscious consumers, and adds extra value through its in-house rewards scheme; and
- Convenient Locations and Delivery – BI-LO offers its customers a convenient shopping experience, placing its stores in accessible locations close to urban communities, as well as offering grocery delivery services.
BI-LO operates primarily as a brick and mortar grocery retailer. As such, it’s principal service channel is its chain of retail outlets. The company currently operates a network of more than 160 supermarkets across South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia, where staff are able to service customers directly. The majority of these stores, around 120, are located in South Carolina. These stores are serviced by a network of distribution and storage centres across the US.
BI-LO operates a website at www.bi-lo.com, through which it delivers customers offers, coupons, information, and advertisements. The website also hosts an online grocery store, through which customers are able place orders for delivery.
BI-LO offers its products to customers on a self-service basis through its online grocery store and delivery service, and on a largely self-service basis through its physical retail locations. These retail locations are staffed by sales and support personnel who are also in place to deal directly with customer enquiries and complaints.
In addition to hosting an online store, through its website BI-LO offers customers information on the company’s retail locations, special offers, and products, and as well as access to its rewards scheme, which allows customers to collect points and earn savings on various products available in-store.
As well as being able to make inquiries with in-store personnel, customers are also able to ask questions or lodge complaints with dedicated staff at the company’s customer support centre in Florida. These personnel can be contacted over the phone seven days per week.
BI-LO is additionally able to interact directly with consumers through its various social media accounts – including with Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. The company frequently handles customer issue and publishes updates through these social media channels.
BI-LO owns and operates a network of grocery stores and in-store pharmacies across Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. Its stores sell a wide range of everyday grocery and household products, including fruits, vegetables, meat, seafood, bread and bakery items, beverages, frozen foods, and pharmaceutical products. The company also provides a range of in-store services, including pre-arranged freshly cut flowers, lottery tickets, gift cards, and money remittance services.
- Vendor and Supplier Partners, comprising food companies, wholesalers and suppliers of grocery and pharmacy products, as well as various third-party service providers that support the day-to-day operations of the company;
- Distribution Partners, comprising various logistics and distribution companies that assist BI-LO ins transporting merchandise from suppliers, through the company’s distribution and warehousing network and to its stores across the US;
- Delivery Partners, comprising delivery and courier companies that support the company’s online grocery and home delivery services;
- Community Partners, comprising various charitable institutions, non-profits, and local organisations with which it coordinates to complete community projects in the south eastern US; and
- Strategic and Alliance Partners, comprising a range of companies, brands, and other organisations with which the company collaborates on branding, marketing, and development projects.
In 2018, BI-LO notably secured a partnership with web-based grocery delivery company Shipt Inc to assist in completing grocery deliveries in Greenville, South Carolina.
BI-LO’s key resources are its product inventory, its suppliers and supply chain, its network of retail outlets, its distribution and logistics infrastructure, its online store, its IT and communications infrastructure, its personnel, and its partnerships. As noted above, BI-LO owns and or leases a network of more than 160 outlets across the south east of the US, complemented by distribution and warehousing facilities.
BI-LO incurs costs primarily in relation to the acquisition, storage, and distribution of its various grocery and pharmaceutical products. It also incurs significant costs in relation to the payment of salaries and benefits to its staff, the maintenance of its website and IT infrastructure, the management of its partnerships, the procurement of third-party services, and the implementation of marketing campaigns. There are additionally substantial operating costs associated with the company’s stores, notably utility and rental fees.
BI-LO generates primarily revenue through the sale of grocery and pharmacy products through its network of stores in the US. It derives revenue from both sales made at its physical retail outlets as well as through its online store. It also generates revenue through the various ancillary service sit offers at its stores, including fresh flower delivery, lottery ticket sales, and money remittance services.
info: Anthony Hucker (“Hucker”) was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer at Southeastern Grocers in 2016, initially serving on an interim basis. He is currently responsible for leading the company’s overall strategic direction. Hucker has also served as a director of Chicago Trading Company since 2014. Hucker began his career as a retail analyst at IGD in 1987. He moved to grocery chain operator Aldi UK in 1990, where he served for nine years in various senior leadership positions, and in 1999 joined GTECH as Regional Vice President for Asia Pacific. From 2004 to 2011 Hucker held a number of executive roles at Walmart, including spells as Chief Information Officer for the Americas and Vice President of Strategy and Business Development, and from 2001 to 2013 served as President of Giant Food. Prior to joining Southeastern Grocers, Hucker served as President and Chief Operating Officer at Schnuck Markets Inc.
info: Brian Carney (“Carney”) has served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Southeastern Grocers since 2005. He oversees the operations of the company’s financial management departments. Carney began his career as an audit manager at Arthur Andersen and Company in 1982. After seven years in this role, he moved to Revco Drug Stores as Senior Vice President of Finance, where he remained for a further eight years. Prior to joining Southeastern Grocers, Carney served for eight years as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Jo-Ann Stores LLC from 1997 to 2005.
info: Steve Strachota (“Strachota”) was appointed to the role of Executive Vice President of Operations and Chief Information Officer at Southeastern Grocers in 2018. He first joined the company in 2015 as Chief Supply Chain Officer, and prior to assuming his current position he served as Head of Supply Chain. Strachota began his career in 1990, when he joined Procter and Gamble in a finance role. After 13 years at Procter and Gamble, he joined Cadbury Russia & CIS as Managing Director, where he worked from 2004 to 2009. Between 2010 and 2015 Strachota worked at grocery retailer TESCO PLC, serving in leadership roles such as Finance Director, Managing Director for UK and Ireland Distribution, and Development Director.
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