Chicago’s City Council’s Finance Committee granted Black-owned company Yellow Banana a $13.5 million subsidy to buy and transform six Save A Lot grocery stores.
Yellow Banana was founded in 2021 by four entrepreneurs who have dedicated their lives to service. The retail grocery platform currently owns and operates 38 Save A Lot stores across the Cleveland, Chicago, Milwaukee, Jacksonville and Dallas metropolitan areas. This organization is working tirelessly to combat food insecurity across the nation. The mission is to “deliver essential nutrition to working families at affordable prices.”
This project will be quite difficult. The current grocery stores need a lot of work, from physical damages to repairing the relationship with the community. Chairman of the City Council’s Black Caucus Ald. Jason Ervin believes stores such as the 420 S. Pulaski Road location should go the length of being renamed to help change the narrative for people who feel the company wronged them.
Ervin told The Chicago Times, “The city is putting a significant investment out here, but at the same time we want to make sure that people will actually utilize this. And that may be something that may hold people up from doing it.”
A partner of Yellow Banana, Michael Nance, is confident that they can get the job done and already met with Save A Lot executives to begin brainstorming ideas for rebranding. With this subsidy agreement, these six locations must remain open for at least ten years!
Nance said, “One of the things that we’re considering in terms of branding is actually doing a mural on the side of that building that embraces the culture of that community. So we would pay out of our dollars to hire a local artist to help brand that store in a way that the community respects and feels.”
We can’t wait to see the change!