“We’re pretty excited about it,” M&W director of operations Rich Tate said. “We’ve been up and running since December.”
With the latest addition, M&W owns and operates 17 locations across the region.
Tate said the parties did not disclose the terms of the deal. The new stores grow M&W’s employee base from 250 employees to 415.
Best known locally for its store on Warm Springs Ave., M&W, which operates under the Intermountain Food Storesumbrella, operates a chain of nine grocery stores and eight convenience stores, Tate said. It owns both Howdy’s and Harpos in Cascade, as well as several other stations without overt branding.
M&W bought a convenience store and fuel station from Logan’s chain owner Logan Hamilton a few years ago in Nyssa, which it now operates as M&W Express.
New M&W branding will show up at the former Logan’s stores soon – Tate says signage is on order.
M&W’s Boise roots run deep
Though a smaller operator, M&W counts Boise as its hometown just like Albertsons and WinCo. Tate said all the homegrown competition benefits customers.
“It forces you to up your game,” he said. It’s a competitive environment. In terms of providing excellent service and working hard for our customers to give them what they want, it’s a good thing.”
M&W launched in 1952. It once operated a supermarket in Boise’s North End, which now houses the Boise Co-Op. The old M&W sign was repurposed as an art piece on the property, with the old “M” “&” “W” sign cans filled with neon and wrapped with sheet metal.
The grocer operates out of an old barn on Gekeler St. in SE Boise. Surrounded by a modern apartment complex, the M&W barn once anchored the Triangle Dairy, owned by the Tate family in the area.
“We’re still in our family’s old barn – built in the late 1800s,” Rich Tate said. “We have a photo from 1890 that shows the barn.”
The Tate family line also built the Alaska Center in Downtown Boise. They also owned Tate’s Rents until recently, when the company converted to employee ownership.
Rich Tate said more expansion could be in store for the nearly 70-year-old company.
“We’re looking for opportunities, definitely.”