Need crackers in Caracas or vanilla in Manila? Grocers Supply Co. distributes groceries near and far. The company (not to be confused with fellow Texas distributor GSC Enterprises) supplies food, health and beauty items, household products, and school and office supplies to about 1,850 convenience stores and supermarkets, as well as 200 schools, within a 350-mile radius of Houston. The international division ships supplies to oil company operations, US embassies, and other customers around the world. Grocers Supply also owns Fiesta Mart, an operator of ethnic food and liquor stores in Texas. Grocers Supply has agreed to sell its wholesale distribution and supply business to C&S Wholesale Grocers.
The Houston-based grocery wholesaler supplies independent grocery stores across Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Mississippi, and Arkansas. Its international distribution arm, Grocers Supply International, ships food and household items to customers in Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa.
Grocers Supply Co's. export business supplies retailers worldwide with American food products. The company operates 15 distribution facilities and runs one of the nation's largest private fleets. Its retail grocery business, Latin-flavored Fiesta, operates about 60 supermarkets in the Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Austin areas. Grocer's Supply also operates stores under the Food Basket and Carnival banners.
One of Houston's largest private companies, Grocers Supply Co. rang up an estimated $3.5 billion in sales in 2013, versus $2.9 billion in sales in 2012.
In late 2014, Grocers Supply agreed to sell its warehouse and distribution operations in the Houston, Dallas, and Rio Grande Valley, Texas, areas, but not its retail operations. The deal is expected to close before the end of 2014.
To provide one-stop shopping for its wholesale customers, Grocers Supply Co. recently added general merchandise, including kitchen gadgets, pots and pans, shoe care products, and auto accessories to its offering. Previously, the company added fresh meats and health-and-beauty products. To stock more dry groceries and refrigerated foods, the company is building a 500,000-square-foot distribution center in Dallas, slated for completion by early 2015. Dallas is a growth market for the company and the new facility will be expandable to 750,000 square feet to accommodate future growth. The wholesaler serves 800 customers in Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana and the new distribution center will make it more economical to enter markets in the Dallas area.
Grocers Supply became a member of the private-label cooperative Topco Associates in 2010. Topco supplies it with dairy and bakery goods, health and beauty aids, general merchandise, pharmacy, processed meat, produce and floral, and fresh meat, among other goods and services. Private brands include Better Valu, Good Sense, Parade, and Paws Premium (for pets).
Mergers and Acquisitions
In June 2013, Grocer's Supply acquired its longtime customer Gerland's Food Fair, a Houston area grocery chain with 16 stores under the Food Fair and Food Town banners.
Grocers Supply was founded by Joe Levit in 1923; his family, led by president Max Levit, owns the company.