SANATOGA PA – Stephen Klotz, vice president of the Lower Pottsgrove Board of Commissioners, acknowledges the word “dollar” in Family Dollar, the company name of the retailer that proposed Thursday (July 24, 2014) to open a store at 2238 E. High St. in Sanatoga village, initially made him feel uneasy.
“I figured the last thing we need,” he candidly told his colleagues during their meeting, “is a dollar store.”
Company representative Tim White of Boos Development Group Inc. in Willow Grove PA quickly agreed the public perception of some “dollar stores” – one of low prices but lesser quality merchandise – isn’t very appealing. So he and others who spoke to commissioners about their project attempted to paint a very different picture of its operations.
Here in graphic form is what board members learned, in comments and from documents presented by Family Dollar:
1) The company was founded during 1959 in Charlotte NC. It has since grown to more than 8,000 stores in 46 states.
2) Its core customer is the female head of a household in her mid-40s whose annual income is less than $40,000. Seventy-five percent of its shoppers are women, White said.
3) The average time spent shopping in a Family Dollar store is 10 minutes. Lower Pottsgrove could expect peak traffic at the store daily between 2 and 7 p.m., according to White.
4) The average amount spent by shoppers per visit, White said, is between $13 and $14. Only 30 percent of an average store’s merchandise is priced at $1 or less.
5) Stores most similar to the one proposed for Sanatoga are currently under construction in Wilmington DE and Stratford NJ.
6) The store expects to employ between 8 and 10 people. Hiring is generally done from within the community.
7) The company, which in the past has been known for locating in shopping centers, is now investing in “standalone neighborhood stores.”
8) Family Dollar relies on brand-name manufacturers to produce its own private-label products, White said, to offer quality at lower prices. Whatever brand-name items appear on ts shelves, the company added, is first-run with no overruns or seconds.
9) In an urban location, according to White, 60 percent of Family Dollar’s business would consist of walk-up traffic. In Sanatoga, he said, the majority of it would be drive-up.
Related (to the Lower Pottsgrove Board of Commissioners’ July 24 meeting):
Photos from Google Images; graphics by The Post