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Who owns King Soopers? Inside grocery chain's operations as Colorado supermarket targetted in Boulder shooting

'These were people going about their day, doing their food shopping and their lives were cut abruptly and tragically short,' Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty said
The grocery store King Soopers, is a brand of Koger and has its headquarters in Denver, Colorado (Wiki commons)
The grocery store King Soopers, is a brand of Koger and has its headquarters in Denver, Colorado (Wiki commons)

A gunman opened fire inside a King Soopers grocery store in Boulder on Monday afternoon causing mass murder and violence. The tragic event saw the death of 10 people, including police officer Eric Talley, 51, who was first on the scene after responding to a call about shots that were being fired and that someone was carrying a "patrol rifle." The officers' body was escorted at 7:45 pm with a process of police vehicles and ambulances. While it has been reported that the investigation will take a few days, witnesses are being interviewed and the other victims are yet to be identified. "I would say that I hope the people of this county send the families of the loved ones their thoughts and prayer,” said Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty.

He added, "A lot of things are being realized as the crime scene is being processed, including the number of victims, which is known to police investigators. But I want to stress that victims’ family members are still to be notified. We being very sensitive to the victim’s families. I also want to stress how incredibly sorry I am for all the victims who were killed in King Soopers. These were people going about their day, doing their food shopping and their lives were cut abruptly and tragically short by the shooter who is now in custody.”

Read on to find out more about how the stores operate and who the senior members are.


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Who owns King Soopers?

The grocery store King Soopers, is a brand of Koger and has its headquarters in Denver, Colorado. The first Soopers store was opened in 1947 by Lloyd J. King and Charles W. Houchens in Arvada, Colorado and the chain of stores grew to 9. In the year 1957, Dillons ended up acquiring the chain, and in 1983 Dillons merged with Kroger making King Soopers a Kroger subsidiary.

In 2016, Dennis Gibson was named president of the company's Kroger's King Soopers division, and his role was made effective on July 1. Gibson replaced Russ Dispense who had retired after working for a dedicated 51 years. Since 2014, Gibson also served as the president of the company's QFC division. Rodney McMullen, Kroger's chairman, and CEO spoke to Gibson's credentials saying, "Dennis is a proven executive whose passion for people and results has earned respect in our company and the industry. Dennis's commitment to our associates and customers will help ensure our business continues to grow. We look forward to his continued leadership at King Soopers."

CEO, the Kroger co. William Rodney McMullen attends the New York Times Food For Tomorrow Conference 2016 on September 27, 2016 in Pocantico, New York. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for New York Times)

When Gibson was named President of King Soopers, he already had 40 years of experience in the retail industry. His career had first started back in 1976 in Salt Lake City, Utah with the Grand Central discount department stores. He then later held leadership roles for 27 years, as per reports, when he joined Fred Meyer in 1984. His roles included store and district management, regional director, and group VP store operations. It was in 2011 that he was named VP operations in Kroger's Columbus division and in 2013 he was VP merchandising.

In 2019, there was a restructure on executive ranks at Kroger which saw many different senior roles change their head. As per reports, Robert Clark was named senior SVP of the supply chain, manufacturing, and sourcing. Mary Ellen Adcock was named SVP of retail operations. Joe Grieshaber was named SVP of merchandising. Dennis Gibson was named president of the Fred Meyer division, and Dan De La Rosa took over the King Soopers division. William Rodney McMullen stands as the CEO of Kroger.

Revenue and Sales 

In 2018, Kroger Co, the parent of the King Soopers and City Market grocery chains made a deal to sell its convenience stores for $2.15 billion, as per reports. The stores are in Colorado and in Wyoming under the Loaf 'N Jug brand, allowing Kroger to have at least 762 convenience stores in 18 states, with 11,000 employees at the time. Kroger which is based in Cincinnati sold its convenience store operation to EG Group which is a Blackburn, England-based operator of convenience stores in Europe.

In 2016 Kroger generated $115 billion in total sales and its convenience store business generated a $4 billion revenue, which included 1.2 billion gallons of fuel, that year as well.