Iowa’s biggest grocery store chain is about to get bigger. Hy-Vee will buy several Eagle stores in eastern Iowa owned by an Illinois-based chain. Hy-Vee’s Ruth Mitchell says it’s not the company’s typical style. She says Hy-Vee’s “main game plan” is through growth and expansion, building new stores, but she says these went up for sale and looked like they’d benefit the Iowa chain and its customers. The stores in Moline, Bettendorf and Dubuque will become Hy-Vee stores after they’re purchased from the bankrupt Eagle chain. Mitchell says there’s plenty more growth going on besides the purchase of the Quad-Cities foodstores. She says there are 14 major store projects in some stage, and two new ones will open before the end of the year, in Omaha and Davenport. Mitchell says Hy-Vee’s growth will never have it competing in the same range as national retailers like Target and Wal-Mart, which have opened “Superstores” with department-store goods as well as food. Hy-Vee’s store size ranges around 75,000 square feet, she says — big enough to have goods and services customers want, small enough to get around in and be on your way.
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