Why call it Big Y? Big Y Foods began as a 900-sq.-ft. grocery at a Y intersection in Chicopee, Massachusetts. It now operates 60 supermarkets in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Most of its stores are Big Y World Class Markets, offering specialty areas such as bakeries and floral shops, as well as banking. The rest consist of Big Y Supermarkets, two food and liquor stores called Table & Vine and Fresh Acres, and a pair of drugstores. Some Big Y stores provide child care, dry cleaning, photo processing, and even propane sales, and their delis and food courts offer to-go foods. Big Y is owned and run by the D'Amour family and is one of New England's largest independent supermarket chains.
In addition to its 60 supermarkets Big Y Foods operates two specialty stores, and a pair of stand-alone drugstores. The company acquired the assets of two Louis & Clark Drug Stores in Massachusetts in late 2011 and rebranded them as Big Y's Louis & Clark Pharmacies.
While the privately-owned company doesn't release its financial results, Big Y's stores rang up an estimated $1.6 billion in sales in 2012 versus $1.5 billion in sales in 2011.
Big Y is set on getting bigger. To that end, it bought seven supermarkets in northern Connecticut from ailing A&P. Four of the seven stores reopened in late 2010 under the Big Y World Class Markets banner, and the company is exploring a new discount concept at a fifth location. Earlier in 2010, the regional grocery chain announced plans for three new stores in Massachusetts to open in the coming years. In 2012 the company launched an online shopping mall -- called The Big Y Marketplace -- that allows customers to earn discounts on groceries by shopping with other retailers online. Its retail partners include Gap, Best Buy, Apple iTunes, Macy's, Sears and more.
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