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Tops Acquires Five Stores From Franchise Partner In Western NY

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Tops Friendly Markets has acquired five stores that had been owned and operated by Supermarket Management Inc., one of its franchise partners. The deal includes four full-service Tops stores in Depew, Lockport, South Buffalo and Buffalo’s west side, as well as one Tops Xpress in Lancaster.

The locations will continue to operate as Tops Markets under their current store management teams. Tops will retain all 585 employees across the sites, and there will be no disruption in store operations, including pharmacy services.

“At Tops Friendly Markets, we’re committed to serving the grocery needs of our communities,” said Tops Friendly Markets President Ron Ferri.

“This commitment fuels our ongoing work to identify strategic opportunities to grow and expand, and it inspired our team’s excitement for this latest acquisition. Adding SMI’s five locations will strengthen our corporate store network and enable us to serve more customers across western New York. 

“Importantly, because we have worked so closely with Supermarket Management Inc. over the years, we are in a great position to provide a seamless transition for our associates and customers, who will enjoy a consistent experience with all stores remaining open and serving them as Tops Markets.”

Supermarket Management Inc., a family-owned company led by President Philip Perna, has been a franchisee of Tops for more than 60 years. In the early 1950s, the late Joseph Perna and Frank Perna began their grocery industry careers, becoming affiliated with Tops in 1963, when they opened one of the first franchised Tops locations in Lockport.

“It certainly won’t be easy for us to leave a business that has meant so much to our family, but we are proud of our efforts to serve the communities our stores are located in and thankful for our wonderful associates and loyal customers who have made our work so gratifying,” Perna said.

“We are happy that our stores will remain part of the Tops family and confident that it will provide our customers and associates with the shopping and career experiences that they have relied on us to provide.”

Ferri commented, “The Perna family has worked tirelessly to serve Tops customers for over six decades, dating back to some of our company’s earliest days. We are proud to honor the impact and legacy of the Perna family and all the franchisees who helped build our company.”

In the coming months, Tops will invest more than $8 million in renovating the store locations at 5827 S. Transit Road in Lockport, 5175 Broadway in Depew and 425 Niagara St. in Buffalo.  These stores will remain open during renovations.

Leadership will pursue future investments and renovations at 1989 Seneca St. in Buffalo, as well as at the Tops Xpress at 470 Aurora St. in Lancaster.

After acquiring the stores, Tops’ store network has one remaining franchisee-owned location in Lewiston, New York. 

The agreement with Supermarket Management Inc. was finalized April 26 with the expected transition to take place within 30-45 days from the announcement. Full terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Tops noted that employees and management teams at the acquired  stores will have greater career-advancement opportunities within the larger corporate enterprise. Store associates have access to training, competitive benefits and career development support, often transitioning into corporate positions, as well as opportunities within other stores or in the company’s distribution center.

Read more independent store news from The Shelby Report.

About the author

Sommer Stockton

Web Editor

Sommer joined The Shelby Report in January 2022 after graduating from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA with a B.A. and M.A. in Communications and Media Studies. Sommer is excited to learn about the grocery industry and share her findings with The Shelby Report's readers!

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