The parent company for Sweetbay supermarkets has announced that 33 of its 105 supermarkets in Florida will be closing by mid-February, leaving about 2,000 people displaced.
Stores to close include nine in Tampa, 13 in Pinellas and Pasco counties and one in unincorporated Hillsborough County — at 507 South Wheeler St. in Plant City, according to According to TBO.
In a Jan. 17 conference call discussing fourth-quarter revenue results , Pierre Bouchut, Delhaize Group’s chief financial officer, said the closures would eliminate those stores operating at a loss in the Sweetbay banner, but said it was the “first step” toward additional changes at Sweetbay, according to Supermarket News.
As reported, Bouchut said, "What we are announcing today is a first step to stop the bleeding at loss-making operation, and definitely over time a more structural solution for the rest of Sweetbay would be a logical step." According to the Supermarket News account, Bouchut said he expects Sweetbay to be profitable in 2013.
In Brandon, Sweetbay has a store at 2530 East State Road 60 in Valrico. There also are Sweetbay supermarkets at 750 West Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Seffner and at 11230 East Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Seffner.
The Sweetbay supermarket on Bloomingdale Avenue, at the corner of Bell Shoals Road, has been vacant for years.