gordy's

CHIPPEWA FALLS — Five Gordy’s Market Inc. grocery stores will soon have a new name.

The stores will be converted to Family Fare Supermarkets “in the near future,” said Meredith Gremel, vice president of corporate affairs and communications for SpartanNash, the parent company of food distributor Nash Finch.

The company acquired the stores — located in downtown Chippewa Falls and on Lake Wissota, Cornell, Barron and Chetek — on March 8, after buying the five stores in an auction for $15.1 million.

The rebranding including “the goal of retaining all store-level associates at the stores,” Gremel wrote in a press release. “The new stores will feature many of the banner’s offerings.”

SpartanNash owns and operates 86 Family Fare Supermarkets across Michigan, Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota, she said.

In the court hearing earlier this month, Nash Finch’s attorney said the company would cover all outstanding health insurance expenses owed by GMI — estimated at $174,000 — and would cover the paid-time off accrued by the stores’ employees.

It is unclear when the stores will be renamed, and if the stores will be closed for a period of time during the transition. For instance, when the Gordy’s Market store was sold and closed in Augusta, it was shuttered for just one day for remodeling before reopening as Great Lakes Foods.

“Additional details will be shared when available,” Gremel added.

Gordy’s Market dropped its counterclaim against Nash Finch prior to the court hearing on March 8, clearing the way for the food distributor to claim ownership of the five stores.

A sixth Gordy’s Market store in Ladysmith was sold last month. Gordy’s Market still owns one store in Eau Claire on Clairemont Avenue, but they are reportedly in negotiations to sell that location to Hansen’s IGA.

Nash Finch filed a lawsuit against GMI for $46.2 million in December, contending that Gordy’s Market “has no excess cash to get caught up on its delinquent balance,” and the grocery chain was on the verge of insolvency.

A court-appointed receiver has set a deadline of April 24 for any creditors of GMI to enter claims with the court if they seek to participate in any dividends.

In 2017, there were 26 Gordy’s Market locations, but 20 of them were sold or closed by the end of that year.