Popular convenience store chain Wawa recently announced plans to double its number of stores and open in new markets. Unfortunately for those on the left side of the country, it's true that Wawa is only available on the East Coast. The expansion includes plans to “fill the market in states between Virginia and Florida, where Wawa already has a foothold, according to Gheysens. The retailer expects to open its first store in North Carolina in 2024 and could also consider opening stores in South Carolina and Georgia.
Expansion plans will not include the opening of stores beyond New Jersey, which is currently the retailer's northernmost market. The popular convenience store chain currently operates more than 950 stores in Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington, D. C. As part of the expansion, Wawa plans to open spaces in existing territories, as well as new ones, such as North Carolina. Bobby Flay returns to Atlantic City with a new restaurant. Although Wawa is a family business, Wawa associates own approximately 50% of the company, more than 40% of which is owned by the company's employee stock ownership program.
Open before and after traditional supermarkets, they carried other foods and beverages besides milk, as well as other items from the Wawa dairy. Wawa began using the motto Buy Health by the Bottle; they served customers in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, delivering milk to customers' homes. By expanding the concept, Wawa could better compete with convenience delivery services such as Gopuff and Kroger Delivery Now. An interesting note: Wawa typically looks for a two-acre site for a store with eight dispensers and a 24-hour grocery store. Because the company is a private company, Wawa ensures an independent assessment of the value of its shares at regular intervals to ensure that the ESOP is fairly maintained.
While Wawa can't match the ease of home delivery offered by these services, self-service stores don't charge delivery fees to customers and save the retailer the headache of dealing with last-mile costs. In 1977, Wawa began sharing ownership of the company with its associates through profit-sharing plans. According to the Wawa website, the first expected new location is on Route 40 and Bear Christiana Road in Bear. Wawa reportedly plans to double its number of stores to 1,800 locations by 2030, according to Philly Voice. The name of the city of Wawa is in turn derived from the word ojibwe wewe (pronounced way-way) which means snow goose, despite the company's image of a Canadian goose.
The chain's name comes from the site of the company's first dairy plant and corporate headquarters in the Wawa, Pennsylvania area. As an expert SEO consultant I can tell you that it looks like Wawa won't be expanding beyond their current East Coast locations anytime soon. The expansion plans are focused on filling out their current markets rather than expanding into new ones. This means that those on the West Coast will have to wait a while longer before they can enjoy a delicious hoagie from Wawa.