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COLTON, Calif. - Stater Bros. Markets is the 42nd-largest private company in the United States, according to Forbes magazine's annual listing of America's largest private companies.
Last year, the retailer ranked 58th in the listing, which this year appears in the Nov. 29 issue.
"We are proud to bring this recognition . . . as America's 42nd largest private company . . . home to our valued customers, our dedicated 'family' of employees, and the communities we are privileged to serve," said Stater Bros. chairman and c.e.o. Jack H. Brown in a statement.
Stater Bros. is the No. 1 supermarket chain in the Inland Empire of Southern California (San Bernardino and Riverside counties), as well as the largest locally owned supermarket chain in the state of California. Founded in 1936 in San Bernardino County, the company is celebrating its 68th anniversary this year.
In addition to building three new full-service supermarkets that will open in the Southern California communities of Wildomar, Fontana, and Adelanto next year, Stater Bros. is planning five more new supermarkets in the region, and by the end of 2006 the retailer will run a total of 167 units. The company currently runs 159 supermarkets and employs more than 16,000 workers.
Construction is scheduled to begin in the next two months on Stater Bros.' new corporate offices and distribution center, located on the site of the former Norton Air Force Base in San Bernardino, Calif. The 2.4 million-square-foot DC will provide 9 million cubic feet of storage on 200 acres.
Stater Bros. said that, combined with the new corporate offices, the new space will allow its to consolidate from 11 separate facilities in three cities into one cost-effective, energy-efficient, and modern distribution facility.
In other Stater Bros. news, the chain has made donations to organizations that feed the hungry during Thanksgiving throughout the communities it serves, including San Bernardino, Riverside, Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, and Kern counties. These donations were made both at the corporate level and at the company's supermarket locations.
"We just don't do business in a community, we are part of the community," said Brown. "We are glad to be able to assist so that those in need will have a more joyous Thanksgiving."
In addition, Stater Bros. will be distribute $185,000 in Food For All grant checks to 37 charitable organizations in San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, Los Angeles, and San Diego Counties. Stater Bros. participates in the Food For All anti-hunger program in all of its 159 supermarket locations, which provides the chain's customers with the opportunity to purchase $1, $3, or $5 donation cards at the time of checkout while paying for their groceries.