Whole Foods Market once had an ambitious plan to broaden customer appeal with its 365 stores. But now it’s saying goodbye to the cheaper and smaller store format.
Whole Foods CEO John Mackey told employees the grocery chain will not open new Whole Foods 365 stores anymore, according to an internal email reviewed by Yahoo Finance. The existing 12 stores, the newest of which just opened in Atlanta in December, will remain in business.
Mackey said the main reason behind the strategy shift is Whole Foods’ prices. “As we have been consistently lowering prices in our core Whole Foods Market stores over the past year, the price distinction between the two brands has become less relevant,” Mackey wrote on Wednesday. “As the company continues to focus on lowering prices over time, we believe that the price gap will further diminish.”