Go Grocer has gone north. The Chicago-based retailer that staked a claim on contemporary convenience with ultra-fast delivery and fresh-to-good foods recently expanded its footprint into Wisconsin.
The latest Go Grocer is now open in Milwaukee's Third Ward neighborhood. Located at 415 East Menomonee Street, the nearly 2,000-square-foot Go Grocer MKE store is owned by brothers Johnny and Edgar Rivera.
[Read more: "Go Grocer Widens Chicago Presence"]
The Riveras are following in the sibling footsteps of Go Grocer founders Gregory and Paul Stellatos, who launched the business in 2008. The Stellatos brothers have grown their small-format operation to 14 stores in the Windy City.
Like the Chicago stores, the Milwaukee outpost in the popular Third Ward neighborhood will offer a curated selection of fresh foods, chef-prepared fresh meals and locally-sourced items with rapid free delivery via a native app. “We have a lot of people suggest this location in the Third Ward. Once I drove up there, I couldn’t believe how beautiful and dense the neighborhood was. I also realized that the demographic was perfect for our brand and finally realized there weren’t many healthy options for what we carried,” Paul Stellatos said.
He told Progressive Grocer that the company has long had a goal of entering new markets, including through franchising. “Ever since I started the brand my dream was to always do a national expansion. This is the first step into making that dream come true,” the co-founder remarked. “As you can imagine we have a lot of interest bringing the brand to other cities, but we haven’t lost focus. We put one foot in front of the other, bootstrapped and without outside money as we grow.”
That independence allows the respective owners/operators to focus on customer experience, store experience and product assortment from both national and hyper-local brands. “If you look around, most of our e-commerce competitors have closed and the remaining have been reported on they are struggling, the landscape has clearly changed in our favor. We are very focused on our customers, not just growth,” Stellatos added.
Looking ahead, another Go Grocer MKE is in the works in a different area of Milwaukee. In addition to working with the Rivera brothers, the Paul and Gregory Stellatos are eyeing expansions in other markets, too.