Clark's grocery store in Londonderry sold to N.H. cooperative

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LONDONDERRY — Clark's Quality Foods IGA, a family-owned grocery store that has served the community for decades, will be acquired by Associated Grocers of New England, according to an announcement by the New Hampshire-based, member-owned cooperative.

Marshall Clark — a co-owner of Clark's, along with siblings Miner and Brenda Clark — said he expects the deal to be finalized in roughly six weeks, once the buyer has secured certain licenses.

"Our goal is not to change the relationships or loyalty consumers have to this store, but rather welcome all customers to become a part of our family," Mike Violette, president and CEO of Associated Grocers, said in the announcement. "This store and the family who has run it for so many years truly capture the essence of the independent retailer AG New England strives to help succeed."

All current Clark's employees will be retained, according to the announcement. The store's name will be changed to Londonderry Village Market.

Associated Grocers operates a wholesale grocery distribution center in Pembroke, N.H., that serves more than 650 stores in New England, New York and Pennsylvania.

It also operates seven stores in Vermont — in Richford, Newport, Jericho, Richmond, Waterbury, Shelburne and Johnson, according to its website — none of which, according to Marshall Clark, are "cookie cutter."

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The buyer appreciates "what's needed to cater to the community," he said.

Violette said in the announcement that the cooperative has had "great success" running the Vermont stores "with a strong emphasis on Vermont-made products."

Associated Grocers also operates several stores in New Hampshire, which together with the Vermont stores "often serve as a testing ground for new technology, products and services before they're rolled out to the [cooperative's] membership at large," according to its website.

Marshall Clark did not disclose terms of the sale of the business, which has occupied its current location at 5700 Route 100 for 45 years. Clark's parents started the business more than 60 years ago, he said in the announcement.

News of the acquisition was first reported online by The Chester Telegraph.

Contact Luke Nathan at lnathan@benningtonbanner.com.


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