Can you name the most dominant retailer of the 20th Century? Wrong. It was the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company or A&P. From humble beginnings in NYC before the Civil War, A&P grew to 200 stores by 1900, hit $1 billion in sales in 1930 and was the largest retailer in the world from 1915 until 1965. In a Dec 2010 Wall Street Journal editorial, they said that “A&P was as well-known as McDonald’s or Google is today” and that A&P was “Wal-Mart before Wal-Mart.”
Why bring them up? They emerged from bankruptcy last month as a privately-held – and much smaller company – than they once were. Though still a major food retailer on the East Coast, A&P long ago fell behind newer, bigger and bolder retailers like Walmart, Target and Aldi.
Unlike A&P, successful retailers stay attuned to shopper interests and make investments in their retail environments to meet the needs of shoppers today. We may be fundamentally loyal people but we are not afraid to find better value in the ways we buy our necessities of life. A&P lost that edge to other formats and approaches.
Successful companies like Tusco Display have changed too to remain attuned to our clients’ current needs with broad, modern capabilities, highly-responsive systems and up-to-date knowledge of consumers, shoppers and the way they buy. We don’t plan to dominate retail of the 21st Century but we DO have the means to help our clients dominate their in-store channels and serve their shoppers better than ever.
Posted on 5/15/2012 at 8:00:00 PM