First reported by Store Brands’ sister publication Progressive Grocer, the 61,000-square-foot facility in Lockbourne, Ohio, located outside of Columbus, will service the central region of the state in collaboration with a fulfillment hub already located near the grocer’s hometown of Cincinnati. The spoke facility will be powered by Ocado Group and also serve as a last-mile cross-dock location to serve customers up to 200 miles away who purchase own brand products from Kroger.
"We're proud to expand the Kroger fulfillment network in our home state," said Gabriel Arreaga, Kroger's SVP and chief supply chain officer. "The new service is an innovative addition to the expanding digital shopping experience available to Kroger customers. Our delivery business continues to accelerate with the growth of fulfillment and spoke facilities. This expansion will further our commitment to create career opportunities and serve shoppers fresh food fast through interconnected, automated, and last-mile solutions across America."
When it reaches full capacity, the facility will employ 200 people and service 250 ZIP codes in Central Ohio. Customers in the area will also be able to use the Boost by Kroger Plus service, which provides access to benefits like free delivery and 2 Fuel Points for every $1 spent on groceries and general merchandise purchases. The program costs $59 or $99 per year.
"We are proud that the nation's largest grocery retailer is headquartered in Ohio, where Kroger continues to evolve its national growth strategy," said J.P. Nauseef, Jobs Ohio president and CEO. "This new, cutting-edge spoke facility in the Columbus region will connect more people to fresh food, create hundreds of jobs, and bolster efficiencies for Kroger customers in Ohio."
As of April, Kroger now has 2,200 locations that offer online grocery pickup, 2,500 locations that offer delivery, and at least 17 of these warehouses that it’s planning to open by 2023.