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• The Houston Chronicle reports that H-E-B’s upscale grocery division, Central Market, plans to add at least two more stores to the five that already operate in the Dallas market, with one of them scheduled to open this summer.

Houston division president Stephen Butt tells the paper, “At this stage, Central Market’s growth plans are in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. We add a Central Market store when we feel we have the right real estate and the right demographic and amount of customers to support the store. We only want to put our stores where we’re confident we’ll be successful.”

The story says that H-E-B’s focus on Dallas for Central Market expansion has much to do with the fact that there is tougher competition there than in Houston, where it enjoys a dominant market position; the company is opening more H-E-B stores there, as well as rolling out a curbside pickup service, to help it cement its competitive position.
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