Meijer, Inc. is a regional American hypermarket chain with its corporate headquarters in Walker, Michigan, in the Grand Rapids metropolitan area; the facility has a Grand Rapids, Michigan address. Founded in 1934 as a supermarket chain, Meijer is credited with pioneering the modern supercenter concept in 1962. About half of the company’s 200 stores are located in Michigan (Lower Peninsula only), with additional locations in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky. Supermarket News ranked Meijer No. 12 in the 2007 “Top 75 North American Food Retailers” based on 2006 fiscal year estimated sales of $13.2 billion.
Meijer is credited with being the first hypermarket store in the US, combining a multitude of merchandise under one roof, though rarely acknowledged as such. The concept of a hypermarket has been credited to stores in Europe, most often Carrefour. This may be attributed to Meijer’s being a regional chain, rather than expanding internationally, and using the term “supercenter” rather than “hypermarket” when they opened the first Thrifty Acres in 1962. Most US hypermarkets were started at later dates. Meijer describes itself as a grocery chain that added general merchandise to their grocery stores in 1962. The Meijers are very private people and would not talk to Forbes for a 1995 comparison to Hypermart USA and Kmart’s American Fare failed hypermarket concepts.

The Portland, Oregon-based Fred Meyer chain (now a subsidiary of Kroger) is unrelated to Meijer. The two similarly named retailers operate similar stores. Fred Meyer’s first multiple department store opened in Portland’s Hollywood District in 1931.

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