LIMA — Chief Super Markets Inc. will soon close its Rays Clocktower Plaza location, company officials announced Monday, and will offer positions to its union member employees at other locations.
The company anticipates the last day open will be April 13, a company spokeswoman said. The company chose to not renew an expiring lease.
The store has been affected by new competition, officials said in a news release. In recent years, Walmart closed its Clocktower Plaza store and opened a new Walmart Supercenter with a grocery store around the corner on Allentown Road. Also, a new Dollar General has opened across the street from Rays and a new Ruler Foods has opened about a mile north of Rays.
The closing is part of a company-wide effort to improve service by focusing on more popular locations, Rays President and CEO Stephanie Skylar said.
“We have two Rays stores on the same street. We hope our customers will make the trip a mile down the road and shop Rays Market at 890 South Cable Road,” Skylar said in a statement.
Chief opened the Rays in 2000. It was previously a grocery store owned by Clyde Evans.
About 70 people are employed at the store. All United Food and Commercial Workers bargaining unit members will be offered a position at another location within the company.
Chief Super Markets Inc. is a family-owned, regional supermarket chain with headquarters in Defiance. The company operates 12 stores under the Chief and Rays banners in nine communities in northwest and west central Ohio. Rays started in Lima in the mid-’80s.
In Lima, Chief operates Rays Market on South Cable Road, Rays Northland and Rays Marketplace in the Eastgate shopping center.
The Clocktower Walmart closed in June 2011. The Fashion Bug store in the plaza also closed its doors earlier this year. RentACenter, Cleaners, American Budget Loans, Sally Beauty Supply, Check Into Cash, GameStop, Fiesta, China Wok, NY Nails, Dots, Larry Paul Tanning, Anytime Fitness, Rays, Dollar Tree and Pet Supplies Plus remain in the plaza.