retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• The Arizona republic reports on the opening of the new Supermercado de Walmart, a Hispanic-themed supermarket opened this week in west Phoenix.

“Judging from the reactions of customers,” the Republic writes, the new store “is a popular addition to west Phoenix.

Interviews with shoppers in the store suggest that they are happy with the prices, the Hispanic foods, the specialty meats, and the produce department in the former Walmart Neighborhood Market that has been renovated to Hispanic tastes.

KC's View:
Actually, this isn’t my view…because I haven't seen the new store.

But one of our intrepid MNB users did make a visit, and filed this report:

I just happened to be in town and availed myself to join in the festivities. As expected, it was jammed, with lots of “suits” (Bentonville visitors or competition ), vendors, and shoppers, the atmosphere festive, and parking lot packed….Giant loaves of bread, mariachi’s, free tastes, colorful bi-lingual walls, bakery, great meat and Aguas Frescas counters, tortilla factory, cocina, produce stacked high and prolifically, good prices, and tailored brand mix at the shelf. It was a fun experience, but in reality… almost too sterile. No music over the loudspeakers, the walls looked like a more colorful Fresh & Easy than a welcoming Mercado. Call me jaded, but I regularly go into the wonderful Hispanic markets in Southern California and Phoenix, and in my estimation, the Superiors, Vallarta’s, Pro Ranch Markets, El Supers, and Cardenas of the area are more spot on than our Bentonville buddies… BUT this IS Walmart and they’ll persevere. In Phoenix, who they’ll hurt are the Bashas’ format Food City, which just happens to be right across the corner…

Thanks for that report.