IBJNews

Marsh rolls out new name at certain stores

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A few Marsh stores are getting a new name on Thursday in what appears to be an early step to differentiate the grocery chain’s offerings in hopes of making them more marketable.

Three Marsh Hometown Market stores in Lebanon, Wabash and Franklin will be renamed MainStreet Markets.

Company officials said the move is a fine-tuning of a strategy launched in 2006 to distinguish the smaller Marsh Hometown Markets from the Marsh the Marketplace locations, which are more upscale and have a wider array of products.

Keeping Marsh in the store name made it harder for customers to draw that distinction, officials said.

“Consumer research has consistently indicated that while our initial strategy aimed to better position and differentiate our stores according to their size and varying consumer demands, the fact that both banners continued to operate under the Marsh name limited our ability to do so,” Marsh CEO Frank Lazaran said in a news release. “Operating under the name MainStreet Market will enable us to take the best of what Marsh stands for in these communities and add a much more customized marketing approach for these stores.”

The chain has about 100 stores, about half in Indianapolis. Connie Gardner, a Marsh spokeswoman, said it’s not been decided whether the chain will roll out the new name to other Hometown stores across the Indianapolis metro area, but some observers predict it will.
 
Last year, Marsh’s parent company, Florida-based Sun Capital Partners, hired an investment adviser and solicited offers to sell the chain, but got no takers.

IBJ reported in August that Sun is not immediately looking to sell the chain and will continue investing in it.

At the time, former Marsh executive Danny O’Malia said he expected the chain to change the name on some of its stores so it eventually can market the upscale Marsh the Marketplace stores and discount-oriented Hometown Market locations to separate buyers.

Indeed, when the company decides to put the stores back on the market, the outlets will be easier to sell with two distinct identities, O’Malia said this week.

“It would be hard to sell both of those types of stores to the same company,” he said. “So they might have to look to two different buyers.”

The MainStreet Markets will offer electronic savings incentives and discount clubs, and will tout a new logo. Employees at the stores will not lose their jobs or be transferred because of the name change.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Buyout Request
    There's a local grocery chain in the South Bend/Mishawaka area that I love to shop at while up there called "Martin's". Family-owned, good quality, great service. I went out of my way to go there instead of Kroger, Walmart, or Meijer. They appear to have weathered the economic storm, and I would welcome their takeover of Marsh.
  • Remember LoBill?
    Long ago in a small town nearby, our local supermarket was a 'LoBill' without the Marsh name attached. Then the investment bankers took over. So they redecorated, became a 'Marsh Hometown Market', cut a number of store brands in favor of 'Food Club'-brand products and prices went up. Now they're redecorating and renaming again, and the prices will go up again. Shoulda kept the 'LoBill' moniker and saved the cost of two name-changes!
  • Huh?
    This is a waste of money. There's one Marketplace by us, and one Hometown Market. I know that the Marketplace is nicer... and I agree that with a name like MainStreet Market, I will probably be less likely to go there. MainStreet = generic. Marsh = local and has the loyalty we've seen for years. I second the motion... I've got WalMart and Meijer closer and cheaper, so what am I waiting for. Change is inevitable, but that doesn't mean we always have to embrace it.
  • Branding?
    Does anyone in this organization understand branding? The statement â??Operating under the name MainStreet Market will enable us to take the best of what Marsh stands for in these communities and add a much more customized marketing approach for these stores.â??

    Walking away from a brand that has been present for 70 years and calling it "fine-tuning of a strategy" is disengenuos.

    Living in the Geist area, we shop at Marsh several times a week and are quite please with offering and the service. Changing the name on the building would leave us to believe that company management has sold our local Marsh grocery store.

    As someone who has managed 300+ retail stores, I taught and encouraged our employees to never give our customers a reason to shop somewhere else.

    Walmart and Kroger are beckoning.

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. I never thought I'd see the day when a Republican Mayor would lead the charge in attempting to raise every tax we have to pay. Now it's income taxes and property taxes that Ballard wants to increase. And to pay for a pre-K program? Many studies have shown that pre-K offer no long-term educational benefits whatsoever. And Ballard is pitching it as a way of fighting crime? Who is he kidding? It's about government provided day care. It's a shame that we elected a Republican who has turned out to be a huge big spending, big taxing, big borrowing liberal Democrat.

  2. Why do we blame the unions? They did not create the 11 different school districts that are the root of the problem.

  3. I was just watching an AOW race from cleveland in 1997...in addition to the 65K for the race, there were more people in boats watching that race from the lake than were IndyCar fans watching the 2014 IndyCar season finale in the Fontana grandstands. Just sayin...That's some resurgence modern IndyCar has going. Almost profitable, nobody in the grandstands and TV ratings dropping 61% at some tracks in the series. Business model..."CRAZY" as said by a NASCAR track general manager. Yup, this thing is purring like a cat! Sponsors...send them your cash, pronto!!! LOL, not a chance.

  4. I'm sure Indiana is paradise for the wealthy and affluent, but what about the rest of us? Over the last 40 years, conservatives and the business elite have run this country (and state)into the ground. The pendulum will swing back as more moderate voters get tired of Reaganomics and regressive social policies. Add to that the wave of minority voters coming up in the next 10 to 15 years and things will get better. unfortunately we have to suffer through 10 more years of gerrymandered districts and dispropionate representation.

  5. Funny thing....rich people telling poor people how bad the other rich people are wanting to cut benefits/school etc and that they should vote for those rich people that just did it. Just saying..............

ADVERTISEMENT