UPDATE: Several hundred people were waiting in line Thursday morning when the ribbon was cut, opening the new Bottom Dollar Foods store in Ross Towne Center, located at 7221 McKnight Road.
The grand opening festivities included giveaways of free private brand products to the first 200 customers, free reusable bags while supplies last, along with a guest appearance by former Pittsburgh Steeler L.C. Greenwood, who signed autographs.
The new store opened as its next-door neighbor, , owned by Giant Eagle, continues to prepare for its opening sometime in October or November.
Bottom Dollar District Manager Barb Bell didn’t want to talk about the nearby competitor.
“We’re just hoping the customers like our banner, and they’ll see the great prices,” she said. “I think they’ll find a competitive environment here and great associates helping them shop.”
Two-thirds of the products offered by Bottom Dollar are brand name, the remaining are the house brand, “My Essentials.”
Store Manager Mark Sansone said that’s what sets it apart from stores like .
“I think the main difference is we carry the majority of the recognizable national brands,” he said. “We’re happy to be here to serve this market, we’re looking forward to doing business.”
Bottom Dollar is similar to Aldi in that it asks customers to bring their own shopping bags, or purchase reusable ones at the store.
Unlike Aldi, Bottom Dollar customers will have to sign up for a free membership card to take advantage of many of the discounts.
Bottom Dollar also accepts manufacturers' coupons and customers can find store coupons on the company’s website.
“They can get coupons downloaded right to their card so they don’t have to clip and carry coupons with them,” said Bell.
The store is open 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.
As part of the grand opening festivities, Bottom Dollar Food donated $500 to each of the following schools: McIntyre Elementary School, North Hills Senior High School, North Hills Junior High School and Ross Elementary School.
Bottom Dollar Food has 13 stores in the Pittsburgh area, including the store in Ross and a new store at 1100 Chartiers Avenue in McKees Rocks, which also opened Thursday. It is owned by Delhaize America, which has more than 1,500 stores along the East Coast, according to the company’s website.
Delhaize America companies include Food Lion, Harveys, Hannaford Supermarkets, Reid's and Sweetbay Supermarket.
The company is part of Delhaize Group (NYSE: DEG), an international grocery retailer based in Brussels, Belgium.
The Ross store employs 30-35 associates, and is still accepting applications.
Anyone interested in applying for employment opportunities at Bottom Dollar Food may visit http://www.bottomdollarfood.com/careers.asp.