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GetGo, the 154-unit convenience chain owned by Pittsburgh-based grocer Giant Eagle, unveiled a new store concept in its hometown yesterday that addresses the convenience store industry’s evolution toward fresh foods and other high-quality offerings.
The prototype is “the next evolution for GetGo, even though the brand only opened in April 2003,” Dan Pastor, VP of fuels and convenience for Giant Eagle, told CSNews Online, a sister publication of Progressive Grocer. “It is a continual progression of how to get better and evolve the concept.”
To mark the opening, Giant Eagle held a “dignitary breakfast” where local officials and company representatives took a first look at the store. A ribbon-cutting ceremony followed, and then the doors were opened to the public, Pastor said.
The prototype store measures 5,500 square feet and features about eight fuel dispensers, a WetGo conveyor tunnel car wash and a new décor package. Customers can sit, dine and check their e-mail in a Wi-Fi café, and choose from expanded food and beverage offerings, according to Pastor.
At this store, the chain’s existing made-to-order foodservice program was expanded to offer more custom sandwiches, subs, paninis, wraps and salads, while the capacity of the program was increased to two stations with additional foodservice labor expenses, to service customers faster, he said. On the beverage side, the store offers cappuccino, milkshakes and six varieties of tea, along with a fountain program of at least 20 heads, flavor shots and various types of ice.
Plans are in place to remodel seven locations in the spring to this décor package, which includes expanding the food and beverage offerings and adding the seating component in existing larger-format stores, according to Pastor.
And the coffee elements of the new package have already been implemented at all GetGo stores that offer hot beverages.
“We’ve upscaled the coffee program with new décor, a new look for the cup and new offerings such as different varieties of syrups and whipped cream,” said Pastor, who noted the program also contains a quality-assurance component that’s promoted to customers. “It’s about providing new alternatives to customers under the beverage umbrella.”
For more on GetGo’s growth strategy, expansion efforts and other initiatives, watch for the January issue of CSNews.