Friday, January 18, 2002

Kroger buys office in Blue Ash

By Ken Alltucker
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Kroger Co. will move its 155-position purchasing division to a Blue Ash building it bought last week for $4.3 million. Employees will begin moving into the two-story, 40,000-square-foot office on Cornell Park Drive as soon as next week, a Kroger spokesman said.

        The building had been leased by Procter & Gamble's research and development staff. But P&G earlier broke a five-year lease and moved employees to its Governors Hill office in Deerfield Township, clearing the way for Kroger's purchase.

        Hamilton County Auditor records list the building's previous owner as Ball Metal Food Container Corp.

        The Kroger relocation is good news for a struggling Greater Cincinnati economy, because 109 positions will be new hires or transfers from out of state, spokesman Gary Rhodes said. The remaining 46 jobs will be shifted from Kroger's headquarters downtown and from offices in Columbus and Tri-County.

        The move is part of a shake-up that includes 1,500 job cuts announced by Kroger in December after a disappointing third-quarter earnings report.

        Kroger intends to apply for tax abatements and possibly other financial incentives from the state of Ohio.

        Mr. Rhodes said Kroger will allow P&G employees to remain at 11310 Cornell Park Drive for a few months as the grocery chain revs up its operations. The office won't be fully staffed until the end of 2002.

        Blue Ash City Manager Marvin Thompson welcomed the move. “It is good news that the majority of (employees) are coming from outside the Cincinnati area,” he said.


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- Kroger buys office in Blue Ash
Office market ready to go
Industry notes: Manufacturing
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