ARCHIVES Competitors don’t fear new Big R store

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Competitors in Findlay’s shrinking retail scene say they are not concerned by Big R’s arrival in the former Sears space at the Findlay Village Mall.
Big R, a chain of more than 20 stores based in Watseka, Illinois, sells clothing, sporting goods, groceries, pet supplies, farm and livestock supplies, lawn and garden and other items.
Just a few blocks east on Tiffin Avenue/U.S. 224, Tractor Supply Co. employee Jen Paxton said her store’s business has not been significantly harmed.
“We’re only down 3 percent,” she said. “Most of our customers said (Big R) didn’t have what they wanted. It is not a farm store.”
If Big R wants to wage war, it can bring it on.
“We price match,” Paxton said.
Brandon Roy, store manager for Family Farm & Home, next door to Tractor Supply, said his store has been unaffected by Big R for similar reasons.
Ag feeds are a specialty at Family Farm, he said.
Big R sells livestock feeds, but its product lines are more generic and narrow, Roy said.
Family Farm & Home offers a wider selection and fills special orders, he said.
The ones who should be worried are Dick’s Sporting Goods and Dunham’s Sports, Roy said. Big R sells sporting goods and athletic apparel and is located near Dick’s and Dunham’s.
“Just the amount of clothing (at Big R) and how they have guns,” Roy said. “They have a whole gun section.”
Dick’s is not worried, said John Popenberg, sales manager for Dick’s Sporting Goods. He declined further comment.
Dunham’s in Findlay would not comment for this story. Big R Store Manager Bob Wample also declined to comment.
Wilin: 419-427-8413 Send an E-mail to Lou Wilin