Thursday, August 2, 2018

AFB is Back! (And Some Safeway Liquidation Updates Too)

     Hello everyone - it's great to be back! I missed not being able to upload posts and photos to flickr over these last few weeks, so it's nice to start getting back into the old groove once again. However, as I return to blogging, the three Florida Safeway stores are currently in the process of liquidation, probably some of the biggest supermarket news to break this summer (at least concerning Florida). Considering how isolated these three Safeway stores were from the rest of the chain and how far away their distribution center was, it didn't come as much of a surprise to many that Publix bought those stores. As nice as it would have been to see Albertsons come back to life in Florida under the Safeway name, it just wasn't meant to be, thereby ending a 43 year operation in the Sunshine State once and for all. AFB contributor Reviewer Jay sent in a few photos of the Altamonte Springs Safeway as the liquidation process began there:



    Reviewer Jay took these photos approximately one week after the announcement of the sale to Publix was released. Already liquidation signs were present throughout the store.


     At this point in the sale, merchandise was already at 5-50% off (with most of those discounts in the lower end of that range this early in the liquidation process). Jay also noted that Safeway was still accepting coupons and running the weekly flyer at this point, all of which were discounts in addition to the store-wide markdowns. I do not know if that is still the case as the liquidation hits the one month mark this coming week.


     More liquidation signage, as seen from the back of the store.

Goodbye Safeway #4402 - Largo, FL. A blip in FL's supermarket history.

Largo Safeway Farewell cont'd....

     In addition to those photos sent in by Reviewer Jay, Ian W. posted these short video clips to his flickr photostream showing the Largo Safeway during its liquidation process. These videos were taken in late July 2018, showing the store still well stocked with merchandise. The only part of these Safeway stores that isn't fully operational at this point are the pharmacies, which shut down in the earlier part of July 2018. The end of Safeway Florida will probably happen in either late August or early September, so you still have a small window of time to make one last trip to Safeway if you haven't had the chance to yet.

     Anyway, coverage of the Safeway closings and the conversion of these stores to Publix will continue here on AFB as the updates come in. I'm interested to see what Publix does to these stores. I'm assuming they'll get some kind of remodel, although I don't know just how much money Publix will dump into these three stores before reopening them. From what I understand, the information seems to suggest that all three of the Safeway stores will reopen as Publix, with the existing Publix stores across the street from these Safeways staying open as well. It's a redundant situation, yes, but it's not the first time Publix has done something like this.

     One last thing I'd like to mention before wrapping up this post is the blog schedule. I'm only going to have one feature post in August, which is tentatively scheduled to upload on the 12th. I may change that depending on how soon I can get caught up on things, although if I do change the date I'll be sure to post a note on the blog. And I will also be spending the next few days catching up on replying to blog comments and e-mails. I've neglected that for the entire summer, so my apologies in advance for all of the delayed replies! Also over the last few weeks, Blogger stopped sending notifications to my e-mail that a comment has been posted on the blog (which was my primary way of knowing that a comment has been posted). I've tried resetting that feature in the blog settings a few times, but it doesn't seem to help any. If anyone knows of a solution to this please let me know, as nothing I've tried seems to help.

     With all of that being said, I think I've covered all of the points I wanted to touch on. I have plenty of good stuff to share as we finish off 2018 here on AFB, so be sure to stick around for much more to come!

So until the next post,

The Albertsons Florida Blogger

13 comments:

  1. Welcome back! I'm still sad about the Safeway closures :( Glad you've got contributors covering them for you, though! (Hopefully you'll be able to make it to at least one of the stores as well!)

    As for the comments... off the top of my head, I can think of literally only one time that Blogger actually emailed me a new comment alert like it was supposed to. That's an annoying glitch indeed. Hope you're able to find a way to solve it.

    And of course, looking forward to all the new content!

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    1. Thanks! It's unfortunate that Safeway wasn't able to make it in Florida. It was probably a long shot that Safeway would survive (especially after not showing any signs of growth or motive for staying in Florida for two years), but at least they tried to do something. I'm trying to find the time to make it to Altamonte Springs before the end, so let's see what happens...

      Well, at least I'm not the only one experiencing this technical difficulty! I'm trying to remember to check the comment section on Blogger more often, but it was much easier keeping track of things when I got those e-mails. But I guess that's Blogger glitching as usual, though.

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    2. You're welcome! And good luck with the visit!

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  2. Welcome back! I was definitely disappointed by the news of Publix buying these 3 Safeway stores in Florida, especially since Publix already has over 700 stores in the state! However, like I was telling Retail Retell on Flickr, as nice as these Safeway stores were, I noticed that they weren't drawing the kind of business they needed to succumb for their large size (especially the 70,000 sq.ft. Largo store). When I took my videos of the Largo Safeway it was 2:30 in the afternoon on a Saturday, and there were maybe only 20-30 customers milling around the huge store. With deliveries coming all the way from their Maryland distribution center, it's no wonder they were not sustainable. I'm pretty sure this is it for Albertsons in Florida. I don't see any possibility for them to get their foot back in the door, so to speak, anytime in the future. I still like Publix and admit they have very respectable stores, I just like options and those are slowly dwindling. Thank you for keeping the Blog alive though! It's always fun to read these posts and see the great pictures!

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    1. Thanks! Not having a distribution center closer to Florida certainly didn't help Safeway's situation much. It's a shame, as those Safeways were really nice stores and overall very positive reviews online. I guess this is just more reason to try to support Winn-Dixie every once and a while. If anything happens to them, Publix will really have rule of the land in Florida! I say this all the time, but like you, I miss having all of the options there were in Florida, even as recently as 15 years ago. However, at least the blog is keeping the legacy of many of these long gone grocery chains alive!

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    2. Publix Super Markets has presently 787 stores with 699 pharmacies in Florida.

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  3. It's interesting to see the Florida Safeways using the same liquidation signage as the Safeway/Albertsons stores that closed recently around here, up in the exact opposite corner of the country. I don't believe I've seen that style anywhere else, so I guess it must be an Albertsons/Safeway specific thing...

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    1. They must have had these signs custom designed to be used throughout the company. Interesting observation.

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  4. Store location numbers for the new Publix stores have been identified:

    Publix #1661, Palm Bay Center, 503 East Altamonte Drive, Altamonte Springs, Florida 32701-4702
    Seminole County, Florida
    Pharmacy
    Liquor
    Opened as Albertson’s #4304. Converted to Safeway and became Safeway #3304.

    Publix #1662, 950 East Commercial Boulevard, Oakland Park, Florida 33334-3210
    Broward County, Florida
    Pharmacy
    Liquor
    Opened as Albertson’s #4319. Converted to Safeway and became Safeway #4319.

    Publix #1663, Largo Mall, 10500 Ulmerton Road East, Suite 800, Largo, Florida 33771-3539
    Pinellas County, Florida
    Pharmacy
    Liquor
    Opened as Albertson’s #4402. Converted to Safeway and Safeway #4402.

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  5. Went back to Safeway in Altamonte today, unfortunately I forgot my phone so I couldn’t take pics. The store still has items on sale and you get the discount of top of that. Liquidation is going fast. The sandwich counter, pizza counter, and pharmacy are closed. The deli is on its final days. Everything remaining at the deli is 4.00lb regardless of item. The bakery has packaged all remaining frosting and baking supplies and are now for sale. Frosting is going for about 2.00 a package. The store once made in store juice and flavored waters and they are selling all those unused bottles for 5.00 for a huge bag. I bought one bag. I will send you a pick of that soon. I give the store another 3-4 weeks at best. Everything in the aisles is being moved forward. Most of the back half of the store is empty already. Most freezers are turned off and lights are off. It’s very depressing. The one thing I found odd is Starbucks is still open and they are still getting shipments. They now have all the fall drinks like pumpkin spice but it’s very clear the rest of the store is not getting anymore shipments. It appears they are sending fixtures out as they have some stacked up and have signs on them “not for sale”. The delivery trucks that were once in the lot are also gone. They are also selling all brand new shelf labels in boxes. There are literally hundreds of them all 5.00 a box. Cant imagine anyone using them. I’m surprised they are not sending those to another store.

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  6. Went back to Safeway in Altamonte yesterday. What a difference a few weeks made. Unfortunately I forgot my phone to take pics. Discounts ranged from 25-75%. I give the store another 3 weeks at best. The pharmacy, pizza station, and sub station are all closed, the deli will be closed in a matter of days. Currently all items are $4.00 lb. regardless of item. The bakery is about shut down. All remaining cake toppers, frosting, and spices are being sold in packages ranging from 1.00 for spices to 1.99 for frosting up to 20.00 for large buckets of frosting. This coming Monday marks the last day fried chicken is on sale according to a sign. What I thought was odd is the store is clearly not getting anymore trucks but Starbucks is still getting shipments bc they are now selling Pumpkin drinks and they weren’t last time I was there. The store also used to sell flavor infused waters and juices. They are now selling all unused plastic bottles with lids in very large bags for 5.00. I bought one of those to make my own water as I was a fan of those. It was depressing as I shopped at this store as Albertsons and now occasionally as Safeway even though I’ve moved almost 40 miles away. There was things you just can’t get at other supermarkets here in Florida. It’s definitely sad to see it go and the state it’s currently in.

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