Editor’s note: This story was published through a partnership between KSAT and the San Antonio Business Journal.
While Des Moines-based grocery chain Hy-Vee plots its entrance into markets in the southern U.S., its CEO has made it clear to employees that the company has no current plans to mess with Texas.
Hy-Vee’s top executive Randy Edeker announced to employees in a company video that the brand — while expanding into new states for the first time since 2009 — won’t be treading into the Lone Star State anytime soon, due to San Antonio-based H-E-B’s presence.
The Des Moines Register obtained the video posted on Dec. 8 to Zipline, Hy-Vee’s internal communications platform.
“They’re [H-E-B] a phenomenal competitor,” Edeker said. “There are lots of weak competitors out there that we just don’t need to go poke that bear, so we won’t.”
Instead, the employee-owned chain — which boasted 84,000 employees and $12 billion in sales at the fiscal end of 2020 – will take Cincinnati-based Kroger Company on in states dominated by the publicly traded grocer; Indiana, Tennessee, Alabama and Kentucky.
According to market research company Metro Market Studies, Walmart continues to be H-E-B’s top competitor in the state.