Schnucks: Not the Friendliest Weeks in Town

Published the week of September 20-26, 2000

That explanation doesn't satisfy ex-Mayor Freeman Bosley Jr., who made the original deal with Schnucks.

"I'm disappointed in these store closings in light of the city giving them $2 million for Union and Natural Bridge," Bosley told me. "We would never have supported them if it meant opening one store and closing two others. That's not economic development, that's a shell game."I'd say that's a little too strong, while agreeing with the spirit of Bosley's comments.

The economic reasons for closing the stores are probably more justified than the company's fumbled public relations would suggest, because the city's problems here are much too big for Schnucks or any other company to tackle. What Schnucks can and must tackle, however, is its public-relations nightmare in the black community. The company's late entry into the market -- it didn't have a single store on the North Side until the National buyout -- has left it with an uphill struggle.

Ray Hartmann
Ray Hartmann

Just like anywhere else in St. Louis, it's all about getting friendlier.

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