DealZone

M&A wrap: Whole Foods the next Starbucks?

January 3, 2012

Whole Foods is about to become the next Starbucks, writes Leigh Drogen. It is about to move from being an organic grocery store to a cultural icon.

Total, France’s largest oil company, bought a $2.32 billion stake in Ohio’s Utica shale region from Chesapeake Energy and EnerVest, Bloomberg reports.

Meet Ted Weschler, a Warren Buffett disciple who has become one of a few candidates to replace the Oracle of Omaha as chief investment officer at Berkshire Hathaway, Deal Journal reports.

Deal makers are growing confident that 2012 will be better for business than 2011, DealBook reports. Not only do they point to cheap financing and the large amounts of cash on corporate balance sheets, but they say that companies that have already cut costs may decide that they need to make acquisitions to drive growth in the face of a tepid economy.

 

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From what I have observed as an educated consumer and regular customer, Whole Foods Market has been doing a fantastic job at simultaneously appealing to customer needs and managing costs.

What I have seen over the past 2-4 years, after the stock lost so much value, was a SMART set of tactics to reign in costs. Some examples at the store level include: Eliminating bakery samples, increasing conventional produce, offering a greater variety of competitively priced grocery items, educating consumers that the “Whole Paycheck” expression is inaccurate, increasing prepared food options and seating, and of course opening stores in highly trafficked and high spend areas such as multiple locations in Manhattan.

When I go to Whole Foods Market in Washington State, the Parking Lots are always, always busy. This was not always the case. Congratulations to WFM for continuing their mission and not deviating on their values. Unlike regular grocery stores, I feel good every time I enter Whole Foods Market. Traditional grocery stores certainly provides an important purpose, but Whole Foods Market provides an experience on top of the same purpose. Cheers to Whole Foods Market for providing a consistent and valued experience every time I walk through the doors.

Posted by LGold | Report as abusive
 

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