In an interview with the Detroit Free Press, Whole Foods Markets’ (WFM) co-CEO Walter Robb indicated that the success of the chain’s new store in Midtown Detroit has led the chain to plan the launch of stores in other economically troubled urban areas.
Robb noted that the Detroit store, which opened earlier this year, had exceeded expectations. “It’s far above our modest projections,” he added, noting that the store had just higher an “additional 30 employees, brining its total number of workers to 130.
The Detroit store had three or four times as many customers who relied on food stamps, compared to other areas in the region. “I’m glad about it. It makes me happy that we’re able to stretch a bit,” Robb said.
He indicated that the Whole Foods is looking at opening stores in other inner-city neighborhoods, including Newark, N.J.
A Whole Foods location is planned to open in Englewood, a community in Chicago’s South Side in 2016.
Shares of Whole Foods rose 1% in Tuesday morning trading.