Oryana West: FAQs
Will you close the 10th Street store?
No! We love our 10th Street store and know that you do too. We will operate both stores.
Will you cut hours at the 10th Street store?
We base the co-op’s hours on when our shoppers shop, so as long as the current hours meet your needs, we will maintain them.
Will you hire more staff?
The bid that we submitted ensured that we retained all current Lucky’s Traverse City staff. We will be working on staffing plans to make sure we are able to offer the same Amazing Oryana Experience you’ve come to expect at both stores. If you are ever interested in a position at Oryana, we are always accepting applications via our online portal or through our Customer Service Desk.
Will the co-op be able to support two locations in Traverse City?
Our current location has a very high sales per square foot, which means we are maxed out in terms of space and customers – even while we continue to grow. (We’ve heard you about parking too!) A second location allows us more space to serve more customers and take the strain off of our 10th St. location at the same time. We’ve conducted a Market Study on this location that shows it is a strong option for a second store.
The process to bid on the purchase of the Traverse City Lucky’s location began back in January before the Coronavirus became a national and localized threat. We have continued to re-evaluate at each step of the process. We are confident, maybe now more than ever, that opening a second Oryana, and maintaining a local grocery and its workforce, is the best decision for the community and the co-op.
Why are you pursuing this location, but not one on the East side?
When we announced that we were not going to open an East side location back in 2016, we were facing an uncertain future with new competitors in our market. We decided to wait to expand until we were sure we could weather those changes. Now that we are seeing continued growth, we are ready to pursue a second store. This particular location is a proven grocery location and is available at a fair price that minimizes our risk while providing us an opportunity for growth and new customers.
Does this require a vote by Ownership?
No. The Board, which is elected by and represents the voice of the Owners, unanimously passed a resolution on February 11, 2020 to approve the GM to submit a Letter of Intent to Bid and pursue this second location. This followed a thorough presentation of the compelling reason this made sense for Oryana and was backed up by our years of due diligence work that was presented to the board.
When will the second location open?
Now, more than ever, grocery services are essential to your health and well-being. As such, we will maintain daily hours at the Lucky’s location alongside our 10th Street location. We will be onboarding all current Lucky’s Traverse City staff, which will allow us to operate both stores.
Natural Grocery Stores are closing throughout the country – is this really the best time to open another one?
There have been a lot of unfortunate closures and declarations of bankruptcy in our industry lately. But there is one key difference between those businesses and ours – we operate as a cooperative. Because we are charged with maintaining a strong and viable business for its Owners (many of you!) we are careful to only pursue opportunities that have low risk and are well researched. While our competitors prioritize growth, we prioritize a strong business model with growth as just one component. We feel confident that this second store will be a strong addition to both Oryana and Northern Michigan.
Will I still be able to drink beer while I shop at the new location?
We don’t know – which is why we want to know what you think! Please let us know of any questions, concerns, or suggestions about this project by sending us a note at [email protected].