Co-opérative Régionale de Nipissing Sudbury Ltd.

Co-opérative Régionale de Nipissing Sudbury Ltd.

April 21, 2010 09:40 ET

New Ownership and New Life for St. Charles Grocery Store

ST. CHARLES, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 21, 2010) - After a long search to sustain grocery store services for local residents of St. Charles, the board of directors and management team of Co-opérative Régionale de Nipissing Sudbury is proud to announce that they have put in place an agreement to sell the assets of its St. Charles Foodland grocery store to a local area grocer. The deal is expected to close on May 2.

Under this agreement, Edmund Jianyong will be the new owner of the St. Charles store. He is an experienced retailer and has owned and operated a Quick Way store in Bonfield for the past three years. He plans to bring fresh ideas that have been successful at his Bonfield location and also wants to expand the hardware product line as well as some of the existing services already offered. The new store will be operating under the name St-Charles Food Town.

Raymond Savage, general manager of Co-opérative Régionale de Nipissing Sudbury says he is very pleased with this outcome. "This deal was very complicated to begin with, but we were very focused on finding a solution that would allow the grocery store to remain open for its patrons. At the same time, it was just as important to structure the deal in a way that would give the new owner reasonable likelihood to succeed." 

"This transaction is not only a win-win for the community but also for our employees," says Savage. Most employees will be able to keep their jobs under the new management or through their seniority rights. The remaining few were compensated fairly through an offer of retirement.

"A new owner with new ideas is probably exactly what this store needs to succeed," says Raymond Brouillette, president of the board of directors of the co-operative. "It has been a long process that could not have been achieved without the support of the community."

The initial communication about the store's declining status was sent out to the community in the fall of 2009 and from that, a committee called Save our Store was formed from members of the community and chaired by local resident Gerry Dignard to help develop a strategy to do exactly that. "The combination of all these efforts resulted in a positive conclusion but the final key to the success of this deal remains in the hands of the community," says Brouillette. "With community support, the people of St. Charles will likely see this store live for many years to come."

More than 4,000 members own Co-opérative Régionale de Nipissing Sudbury Ltd. From locations in Verner, Noelville, St-Charles, Thornloe and Algoma, the co-operative provides products and services in agronomy, feed, grain handling, petroleum products including renewable fuels and propane, and consumer retail needs including two grocery stores located in Noelville and Verner. It also operates a fertilizer blender and grain handling facility in the Temiskaming region. The co-operative owns Northern Feed Supplies Ltd. in New Liskeard and the heating, farming and commercial fuels business from Norstar Petroleum Ltd. located in Azilda. Co-opérative Régionale de Nipissing Sudbury is a shareholder of GROWMARK, Inc., and markets products and services under the FS banner.

Contact Information

  • Co-opérative Régionale de Nipissing Sudbury Ltd.
    Raymond Savage
    General Manager
    705-594-2770 (FAX)