A grocery store property in the Outer Richmond that tried to go down-market as a Fresh & Easy location a few years ago is going to pivot to an upscale clientele as Safeway plans to put an Andronico's there.
The 16,664-square-foot vacant market at the corner of 32nd Avenue and Clement Street was once home to a Safeway in the 1970s, and an Albertson's more recently. In 2011, it was leased to the now defunct Fresh & Easy chain, the U.S. subsidiary of Britain's Tesco which went bankrupt and shuttered all its locations in 2015. As the SF Business Times tells us, with Safeway's recently announced decision to revive the Andronico's brand and rebrand its upscale Safeway Community Markets at Andronico's, the company is hoping to snag the upper-crust dollars from Seacliff — the ultra-wealthy enclave this location sits beside, which is home to Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, Twitter/Square CEO Jack Dorsey, and many other rich people.
Since 2015, Safeway has been owned by Cerberus Capital Management, the corporation that is also behind Albertsons, Vons, and some other large grocery brands. In 2016, they acquired Andronico's, the 87-year-old Bay Area grocery brand, along with its remaining five locations in Berkeley, Los Altos, San Anselmo, and San Francisco. The plan announced at the time was that these would transition into "Safeway Community Markets," but apparently the company has decided the Andronico's brand still has value.
Hoodline first caught word of the Andronico's coming to the 375 37th Avenue location last summer, though at the time it was not clear that Safeway would be sticking to this brand name.
Safeway is reportedly putting $2.7 million into renovating the store, and per the Business Times it "will open with expanded organic and specialty item offerings, gourmet cheeses and a fresh meat, seafood and deli emphasis rather than a predominantly packaged food selection." The store will provide 70 new union jobs.
The new store is expected to receive Planning approval this week, and an opening date is still TBA.