Tag Archives: grocery store


Sprouts COO Named Retailer of the Year

Since joining Sprouts Farmers Market as Chief Operating Officer, Jim Nielsen has been a driving force at the company, leading all merchandising initiatives for the healthy grocery store chain along with operations now spanning ten states and close to 200 stores.

As the company more than doubled in size between 2011 and 2013, Nielsen was instrumental in completing the successful acquisition and integration of the Henry’s Farmers Market, Sun Harvest Market, and Sunflower Farmers Market chains.

Prior to joining Sprouts, Nielsen served as president, vice president and general manager of Henry’s Farmers Market. From 2002 to 2006, he served in roles of increasing responsibility for Wild Oats Marketplace, including director of operations, director of non-perishables and director of merchandising. Nielsen began his career at Smith’s Food and Drug in 1986 where he held various positions.

The Arizona Food Marketing Alliance (AFMA) recognized Nielsen as Retailer of the Year at its Annual Excellence in Leadership Awards banquet – Arizona’s premier retail food industry event – on October 17 at the Phoenix Downtown Sheraton.

“I believe this is a team award, not an individual award. It’s about recognizing all of Sprouts’ incredible accomplishments that happen each and every day due to our dedicated team of more than 17,000,” said Nielsen. “There is nothing better than being recognized by our peers in the industry.”

AFMA President, Tim McCabe, said Nielsen was nominated several times from both a group of peers and constituents. “Jim has demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities and passion for his role at Sprouts. He has been a big contributor to the continued success and growth of Sprouts, not just in the Arizona marketplace but throughout all their stores.”

This year’s ceremony also honored Paul Ratner, off-premise general sales manager at Southern Wine & Spirits, as the Supplier of the Year; and Don Olsen of Olsen’s Marketplace IGA, who was inducted into the Arizona Food Industry Hall of Fame.


Eddie Basha memorial set for April 6

A memorial service for grocery store magnate Eddie Basha is scheduled for April 6 in Tempe.

The former chairman and CEO of the Bashas’ family-owned supermarket chain died Tuesday at age 75.

Officials of the Chandler-based company say the memorial will be held at 10 a.m. at Gammage Auditorium on the Arizona State University campus.

Basha guided the company that carried his family name for more than 40 years. At one time, the chain had more than 160 supermarkets serving all 15 Arizona counties.

He was appointed to the Arizona Board of Education in 1984, the state Board of Regents in 1990 and unsuccessfully ran for Arizona governor in 1994.

Basha is survived by his wife and six sons, including four from his first marriage.