2022 look ahead: Will H-E-B’s Frisco and Plano store openings upset the grocery cart?

Written by Desmond

December 29, 2021

H-E-B has been disrupting grocery markets in Texas for decades. In 2022, it’s Dallas-Fort Worth’s turn when the popular chain opens its first namesake stores in an already highly competitive market.

Will H-E-B, which also operates six Central Market stores in Dallas-Fort Worth, quickly take away market share from the likes of Walmart and Kroger as soon as the doors open this fall at its two locations in affluent neighborhoods?

The stores on Legacy Drive in Frisco and Preston Road in Plano are in every grocer’s sweet spot, surrounded by Collin and Denton counties’ constant, nationally ranked and celebrated population increases, which are still generating most of D-FW’s growth.

H-E-B chose its first couple of sites to give itself the best shot at a strong start to its long anticipated D-FW expansion but also to be close enough that shoppers from surrounding areas can check them out and maybe start making the trek for stock-up visits. That’s how many Dallas residents have been using H-E-B’s Waxahachie store for years.

A third store opens in early 2023 in McKinney on the northeast corner of Custer Road and Eldorado Parkway smack in the middle of a high-income residential area bordered and accessible by major highways and tollways.

More are expected to be announced once this initial group of stores guides the San Antonio-based chain on where to open next. It already owns more than 20 high-traffic corners in the region.

H-E-B, the largest Texas-based grocer with sales last year of $33 billion, is forcing everyone else in the grocery business to play defense.

Chances are you’re already benefiting from those yet-to-open H-E-B stores.

Albertsons, Tom Thumb, Kroger, Target and Walmart stores are being renovated with wider aisles and refrigerated areas to hold curbside pickup orders.

And major grocery retailers may be chasing rooftops again after taking a hiatus from opening new stores, first to build out their online shopping infrastructure and then because the pandemic forced them to focus on operating safe stores for their employees and customers.

Kroger is listed on plans for Melissa Village at 121 and FM 544. And the chain’s robotic online grocery fulfillment center will be completed this year in southeast Dallas and will be able to fill orders throughout the D-FW region.

Walmart, the largest D-FW grocer, last year announced two new regional fulfillment centers in Lancaster, one for food.

Albertsons, which also operates Tom Thumb and Market Street, is rumored to be looking at Hillwood’s plans for a new mixed-use project called Harvest Town Center in Argyle. A Tom Thumb or Market Street may be Argyle’s first supermarket.

Twitter: @MariaHalkias

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