ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Foxtrot, an upscale convenience store retailer, has named a new president and chief financial officer, reports Grocery Dive. Liz Williams will assume the roles, having served as CEO of Drybar and CFO of Taco Bell and president of Taco Bell International.
Williams will oversee the retailer’s operations, finance, strategy, real estate, growth, human resources and supply chain divisions.
Foxtrot currently operates 21 locations in Chicago, Dallas and the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area and plans to expand to 100 stores by the end of 2024. The company plans to open 30 locations by the end of this year and launch operations in Austin, Texas, as part of its expansion this year.
The omnichannel retailer decided that it needed an executive skilled in operations to ensure it has the necessary infrastructure to manage that aggressive expansion.
“With Taco Bell, we had very clear standard operating practices that were really fundamental and non-negotiable. Picking the most important ones and also having the magic of the brand is—to me—what successful retailers [do]. They have this amazing brand, but then they execute it really, really well,” Williams told Grocery Dive.
Foxtrot plans to add new stores at a rate of 30 to 40 per year for the next two years, which Williams says is “aggressive but achievable.” The company is looking to add Houston, Miami and Southern California to its footprint.
Williams wants Foxtrot to better serve its customers who are seeking prepared meals in the evening. The company plans to start offering choices like grilled chicken breast, roasted salmon and dips to help shoppers assemble dinners. Foxtrot is also planning to test pizza as an option and will promote the food in conjunction with its wine program, Grocery Dive reports.
Foxtrot launched in 2014 with an aim to “modernize the nostalgic corner store experience by creating a digital-first, e-commerce platform paired with a beautiful retail experience.” Foxtrot's operating model leverages retail stores as delivery hubs. Its five-minute market pickup has grown 250% this year, with cafe orders within the channel increasing 375% year to date. Customers order via an app, and the average order is $50.
Foxtrot’s specialty is private-label products. During the next year, Foxtrot plans to create and launch about 200 new private label SKUs. Since introducing private-label products one year ago, the assortment of Foxtrot-branded and -created labels now accounts for nearly 30% of all retail offerings and nearly half of all brick-and-mortar and online sales.