Publix Super Markets Case Analysis

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1358 Words
Date:  2022-06-06


Publix Super Markets is a retail food store located in Lakewood, Florida with branches in different parts of the U.S. The company specializes in selling grocery products such as produce, bakery, dairy, deli, seafood and meat among other products. Currently, it is the largest food store in the U.S operating 1,172 stores in Alabama, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, and Virginia among other states. The success of this company is based on its history, the business model and its uniqueness to its competitors. This research paper will focus on these three aspects in analyzing the case of Publix Super Markets.

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The History of Publix Super Markets

Publix Super Markets was founded in the year 1921 by Jenkins and incorporated in the year 1930 (Publix, n.d). It has grown from one single store to the largest grocery chain in the U.S. owned by its employees in the U.S. The first Publix Super Markets was opened in 1940 after Jenkins closed the first two stores he owned. Publix experienced increased growth in the 1960s and 1970s in Florida and this encouraged Jenkins to start expanding the stores to other parts such as Miami in 1963 and a warehouse in Jacksonville in 1974. It opened its first discount chain in Florida in 1976 after learning people's lifestyles. The growth continued through the great depression and Publix and reached to $2 billion worth of sales in 1979 after opening 234 stores in different parts of the U.S (Funding Universe, 2018).

Publix Super Markets moved to superstores in the 1980s by dividing the business into three divisions including the Jacksonville, Miami Division as well as the Lakeland Division. Strategic location and innovation had been Publix's core reliance to successfully competing in the market. However, in the 1990's Publix experienced a string of legal challenges from several groups such as the United Food and Commercial Workers union in 1992, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in 1993 and 1995, and the coalition of labor, feminist, Hispanic and African American rights in 1994 because of race and gender bias in the employees (Funding Universe, 2018). Even though the company was affected by these lawsuits, its sales continued to grow over the years and customers remained loyal as it was the favorite in the U.S. The company continues to grow in sales and opening new subsidiaries in different states until today.

The Business Model of Publix Super Markets

Ovans (2015) defines a business model as a plan that companies use to successfully operate in their businesses. These can be the ability to identify sources of revenues, details of financing and the intended products as well as the customer base among other aspects. Publix Has not been left behind in defining its operational plan to succeed in the competitive market. Innovation has been a core resource for the business in achieving greater success in completion (Natalie, 2015). The adoption of the state of art grocery store that features new technologies each time has been an aspect of business development since the 1940s when it adopted air conditioning and fluorescent bulbs within its stores, using barcode scanning technology and offered ATM machines to customers before Florida banks in 1970s (, 2016).

Shopping at Publix is enjoyable and this is what the business has been working to achieve for the customers through heavy investments. For instance, in 2014, Public Supermarkets invested $1.6 billion in building, remodeling and acquiring more stores as well as expanding the business footprint. Addition of new departments and services in the supermarkets has been a trend over the years that make Publix a leader in the grocery store innovation. Some of these new departments include a pharmacy, flower shops and bakery among others. Such an instance can be identified in the company's history 2001 when Publix started its online grocery services to customers (Natalie, 2015). Publix has key partners including subsidiaries, suppliers, and manufacturers. It has brands such as Aprons, Prestol, PIX, Publix Sabor and GreenWise. The company also boasts of good customer relationships through online shopping, self-service, price-based, home delivery and person-to-person selling (Vizologi Inc., 2018).

Things that Make Publix Super Markets Unique Among its Competitors

There are various things that make Publix Super Markets unique when compared to its competitors. In fact, the company has unique selling points that provide added value to customers. They include lowest costs, highest quality and customer service. A unique selling point is a feature that differentiates a business from its competitors. For Publix, customer service is number one with the "where shopping is a pleasure" feature that appears in all its stores. Publix competes with Whole Food companies, Wal-Mart, Winn-Dixie, Sedano's and Targets. Wal-Mart is the largest food retailer in Florida. However, Publix beats those companies with the lowest customer cut-rate prices (Mann, 2015). The people's first culture makes Publix the winning grocery store. The company achieves success by focusing on customer service in its operations. Publix gives its customers unique shopping experience for its quality and low prices products. In fact the unique selling points are built within the three areas where customer service is primary, quality being secondary and price as a tertiary objective (Solomon, 2013).

Customers would be willing to spend more by shopping at Public vice a cheaper competitor since Publix guarantees to never disappoint its customers knowingly (Funding Universe, 2018). Customers are guaranteed of satisfaction at Publix when compared to cheaper competitors. Publix always knows how to differentiate based on quality, price, and service. Solomon (2013) says that, at Publix, customers are assured of service as the number one, then quality and lastly the price of a product unlike competitors like Wal-Mart who only consider competing based on low prices.


Bloomberg. (2018). Company overview of Publix Super Markets, Inc. Food and Staples Retailing. Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved from (2016). Publix Super Markets, Inc. Economics Magazine. Retrieved from

Funding Universe. (n.d). Publix Super Markets Inc. history. Retrieved from

Mann, J. (2015). The power of Publix: Market battles for dominance as it expands. Special to the Miami Herald. Retrieved from

Natalie, (2015). Publix: Every Floridians' favorite supermarket. Technology and Operations Management. Harvard Business School. Retrieved from

Ovans, A. (2015). What is a business model? Business Models. Harvard Business Review,

Publix. (n.d). Publix.

Solomon, B. (2013). The Wal-Mart slayer: How Publix's people-first culture is winning the grocery war. Forbes. Retrieved from

Vizologi Inc. (2018). Publix Super Markets business model canvas. Retrieved from

Cite this page

Publix Super Markets Case Analysis. (2022, Jun 06). Retrieved from

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