retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Daily Record reports on how Winn-Dixie has “embarked on a program to ‘transform’ selected stores among the 484 it operates in the five states of Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana ... The transformation is focused on fresh fruits, vegetables, meats and seafood along with freshly prepared foods and specialty stations, as well as a wine area. The store features higher ceilings, wood and polished concrete floors and improved shelving.

“There’s also a community seating area with free coffee and Wi-Fi.”

According to the story, “The stores are renovated floor-to-ceiling at a cost of about $5.5 million, almost triple the average renovation cost of $2 million. The changes result in increased sales, which Winn-Dixie has said reach an average $475 per square foot, a 60 percent increase from the average $300 at its other stores.”
KC's View:
According to one Winn-Dixie official, these transformations are seen as a stepping-stone to the future. But I can’t shake the feeling that there are those who hope that improved performance actually will put Winn-Dixie on the fast track to an eventual sale, that it is just a matter of time before the company is either sold or broken up.

How long has Winn-Dixie been trying to transform itself? It seems like forever ... but then again, maybe I’m just getting old and cranky.