HANNIBAL, NY – The long term grocer in Hannibal, Jim Mirabito of the Village Market IGA has recently confirmed the sale of the store to Tops Friendly Markets.
After 50 years of service as Hannibal’s only withstanding full-scale grocery store, the Village Market located at 409 Fulton Street will close officially at 3 p.m. on August 7.
A recent press release from Tops officials have confirmed that the store will re-open as a chain of Tops Friendly Markets on August 11.
“When the opportunity to operate in the Hannibal community became an option for us, we knew that a Tops Markets in Hannibal would be a perfect fit,” said Frank Curci, Tops’ chairman and CEO in the store’s press release.
But many customers in the Hannibal community were not as sure and questioned whether Tops would be able to replace the hometown, local feel of the family-owned IGA.
“As we have done in similar situations, Hannibal residents will find that Tops believes strongly in being your neighborhood grocer and supports that by being an active participant in all the local communities we serve,” said Curci.
Curci also said that, at the same time, the new store fits in well with the company’s successful overall growth strategy and complements its other stores in both Oswego County and in the Central New York region as this store brings the Tops Markets overall store count to 172, including the Fulton store location that Tops acquired last year.
“This store is ideally located, has great potential, and we believe we can offer customers an exceptional shopping experience,” he said. “Hannibal’s residents will be able to choose from a larger variety of national and local brand products, while saving time and money.”
The press release answered some of the many questions from the community as far as what changes can be expected, adamant that Tops will strive to keep the community connection thriving as the transition occurs.
The faces of the Village Market IGA could remain the same as Tops will offer all full and part time associates of the store continued employment with Tops Market to “help to ensure that customers will see their same friendly team of associates and receive the same great service as in the past,” the release explained.
Similarly customers can expect to save on gas prices like they do now through a store gas card at the IGA as Tops will offer a similar program through the Tops BonusPlus card at a “completely refreshed onsite fuel station” in which customers will earn 10 cents off a gallon of gas for every $100 spent at a Tops location.
While keeping those things the same, Tops intends to make significant renovations to the 23,000 square foot store including “refreshed interior décor as well as expanded product selection, expanded refrigerated produce allowing for more variety and convenience, an enhanced in store cut fruit and vegetable program, and much more organic as well as an increased meat and seafood selection.”
While Tops plans to change the store in such ways as décor, selection and product expansion, the Friendly Market also aims to keep the community involvement and welcoming feel the Village Market IGA has maintained for 50 years.