All eyes remain on Amazon and Whole Foods following the infamous acquisition that rocked the grocery world last year. And with Whole Foods operating in a similar niche of health and wellness as Sprouts Farmers Market, many are wondering if the grocer is planning any major moves to keep up with the industry's top dogs.
But, in an interview with TheStreet, Sprouts’ CEO Amin Maredia reveals that the grocer isn't necessarily keeping an eye on Amazon or Whole Foods.
“I think the key to understand, and that most people miss, is that we’re in an $850 billion-dollar industry, which Amazon/Whole Foods has a little over 2 percent of market share. So, 98 percent of the space is really conventional supermarkets, club stores, and some specialty stores. Our battle every day is really with the conventional supermarkets. There are over 40,000 conventional supermarkets in America today and very few of them do health and value well and almost nobody does health, value, and experience really well. That’s where Sprouts has really become more and more mainstream for families looking to eat healthy, save, and have a good in-store experience,” Maredia said when asked how Sprouts does battle with Amazon.
Maredia goes on to discuss Sprouts’ specialization in organic and health goods, and how having a wide assortment, deep flavor profile, and innovative selection that adheres to vegan, gluten-free, and paleo diets has set the grocer apart from its main competitors, conventional supermarkets. Madero also explains that Sprouts' in-store experience is unique from other supermarkets because it encourages shoppers to explore the 30,000-square-foot stores, something not emphasized at other chains.
Not abandoning the possibility of an Amazon rivalry, interviewer Brian Sozzi asks if a possible acquisition or banner sale is in Sprouts’ future, to which Maredia replies, “If we’re doing what we’re doing really well, we could be too expensive to buy.” How mysterious!
For more details on the competitive grocery retail market as it relates to deli, dairy, bakery, and specialty foods, stay tuned to Deli Market News.