Chicago grocery chain acquired by New York-based investment firm
Tony’s Fresh Market, a specialty grocery chain with 18 locations in the Chicago area, is being purchased by funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management.
Tony’s Fresh Market has been family-owned and operated since its founding in 1979, when Italian immigrants Tony Ingraffia and Domenico Gambino opened the first location at Fullerton and Central Park avenues with a handful of employees.
“It just felt like we needed and wanted a partner that can help us get to the next level,” Frank Ingraffia, the CEO of Tony’s and Tony Ingraffia’s son, was quoted as saying by The Chicago Tribune.
“We think we have a good thing going here, and we’ve done well over the course of 43 years, but when you bring on a partner like Apollo it kind of takes you to the next level.”
Ingraffia, who began bagging groceries and pushing carts for the family business as a preteen, said Apollo would bring “an improvement from the customer’s standpoint.”
The New York-based private equity giant has made prior investments in the grocery sphere, putting down $1.75 billion in Albertsons Companies Inc. in 2020. Albertsons owns grocery chains including Safeway and Jewel-Osco. The company has also invested in Sprouts Farmers Market, The Fresh Market and Smart & Final.