Dollar General Dips Deeper Into Food Deserts With 975 Stores

By CultureBanx Team

  • Dollar General has been targeting food deserts, areas not served by supermarkets

  • They will remodel 1K older stores with produce planned for about 200 of those locations

Dollar General (DG +2.02%), the discount retailer that relies heavily on low-income shoppers is expanding its presence with an additional 975 stores. As part of its nationwide expansion DG will remodel 1K older stores with produce planned for about 200 of those locations. By adding a broader mix of food along with health and beauty products to its stores, this could prove to be very profitable for the company.

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Why This Matters: In an effort to make sure sales continue to rise the company plans to beef up its health and beauty sections. If we look at the power of the black dollar across these consumables, African Americans spend nearly $54 million a year in the ethnic hair and beauty space. When it comes to the broader market in personal appearance products, such as grooming aids and skin care preparations, black shoppers spent $127 million and $465 million respectively, according to Nielsen.

Last year, DG opened 900 new stores and 1,315 in 2017, all the while continuing to increase sales for 29 consecutive years. Dollar General has been targeting food deserts, areas not served by supermarkets or nearby grocers as its next great growth opportunity. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported that 23.5 million Americans live in food deserts.

In personal appearance products, such as grooming aids and skin care preparations, black shoppers spent $127 million and $465 million respectively

Also, they have strong ambitions to win over more low-end consumers by adding a broader mix of food to its stores. Their average shopper comes from a household that earns $40,000 or less per year. In 2017, the U.S. Census Bureau released data showing the median income for an African American household was $39,490, putting them right in the Dollar General consumer sweet spot.

Situational Awareness: Typically DG stores cost just $250K to open, meaning it’s easier for them to set up shop in rural areas. Their large network of stores which at last count stood at nearly 15,300 is supported by a robust business model that saw same-store sales increase 4% in Q4 of 2018. Additionally, the company plans to invest more in digital ordering and grocery sales with DG Fresh and Fast Track.

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