Giant Eagle Digital Transformation Strategy

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Giant Eagle Digital Transformation Strategy

Key Takeaways

  • Giant Eagle has over 10,000 branded products and offers an array of groceries featuring full-service pharmacies, dry cleaning, bakeries, in-store banking, deli, and cheese shops.
  • Giant Eagle has entered into a multi-year agreement to use Eagle Eye's AIR platform to transform and scale its new personalized digital loyalty program across all areas of its business.
  • Major competitors of Giant Eagle include Tops Markets, Safeway, Brookshire's Food & Pharmacy, and Ingles Markets.


This research offers an analysis of Giant Eagle with a focus on its digital transformation strategy.

Company Overview

  • Founded in 1931, Giant Eagle is a regional supermarket chain that has over 10,000 branded products, including everyday pantry staples, natural products, and one-of-a-kind foods. The company backs its Giant Eagle, Market District, and Nature's Basket products with its Double Your Money Back Guarantee.
  • Giant Eagle offers an array of groceries featuring full-service pharmacies, dry cleaning, bakeries, in-store banking, delis, and cheese shops.
  • Since its latest acquisition in 2018 of Ricker Oil Company, a convenience store chain in Indiana, Giant Eagle now operates over 470 stores across Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland, and Indiana.
  • Giant Eagle has over 32,000 employees, with annual revenue of $10 billion in FY 2021.

Corporate Value and Missions

  • Giant Eagle's core values are “Respect All; Think Team; See It, Own It; Work Smart; Live Well; and Do Right.”
  • Its mission is to do business in socially and environmentally responsible ways to benefit its employees, customers, communities, shareholders, and the planet.

Recent and Announced Strategic Initiatives

Digital Transformation Hub

  • In August 2019, Giant Eagle announced plans to open a technology annex within the TechMill 41 development in Pittsburgh’s Lawrenceville neighborhood by early 2020. The initiative is part of an attempt to attract and retain “top tech talent” to enhance its current digital offerings and develop new technologies to foster its digital transformation.


  • On September 1, 2020, Grabango, a tech startup that developed a system that allows shoppers to bypass checkout stations in retail stores, rolled out its first commercial deployment at Giant Eagle-operated GetGo Café+Market convenience store in Pittsburgh.
  • Grabango's camera-enabled system detects products upon selection by shoppers and adds them to a virtual shopping cart. When shoppers are exiting the store, they scan a code on their smartphone, and the system collects payment. Giant Eagle said it had plans to deploy the system at more of its convenience and grocery stores “in the near future.”

Eagle Eye's AIR platform

  • On January 27, 2022, Giant Eagle signed a multi-year agreement with the global marketing technology company, Eagle Eye. The deal allows Giant Eagle to use Eagle Eye's AIR platform to transform and scale its new personalized digital loyalty program across all areas of its business.
  • The AIR platform will also help streamline end-to-end management of real-time personalized promotions at Giant Eagle so that it can keep innovating its in-store customer experience. They plan to roll out the functionality in phases, beginning from June 30, 2022.

Quotes Relating to Giant Eagle's Digital Strategy

  • “As the retail industry continues through this amazing period of technological change, we are extremely fortunate to call Pittsburgh—a city with a deep and growing tech talent pool—home. Our new office space in the heart of Lawrenceville will provide us with a geographic advantage to compete with regional, national, and global companies that are vying for this unique expertise.” — Laura Shapira Karet, president and CEO at Giant Eagle
  • “We were already on a digital transformation journey before the pandemic hit, but the arrival of COVID-19 accelerated customers’ desire for services like online ordering, curbside pickup, and delivery, so we had to rapidly mature our digital capabilities while staying mindful of the safety of customers and team members. We’ve learned to not let our plates get cluttered with tasks that don’t ultimately drive transformation and customer service.” — Kirk Ball, executive vice president and CIO at Giant Eagle
  • “As a grocery store, as any retailer, you've got to get used to the fact that more digital is going to mean that you need to really harness that skill because it's not as easy as, oh okay, just got an order online, okay, ship it. There's a lot of different ways that can happen. There are a lot of processes that need to be evolved, and grown, and refined, and value-engineered before it can become successful.” — Scott Ross, vice president of finance at Giant Eagle
  • “We are thrilled to be the first supermarket and convenience chain in the country to accept PayPal and Venmo in our stores.” — “Graham Watkins, executive vice president of retail innovation and business development at Giant Eagle.”

Marketing Tech Stack

Corporate Challenges

  • In September 2021, Giant Eagle announced the closure of its 94,000 square foot Lewis Center store on October 2, 2021, after 21 years at the site, citing “unique store layout challenges.” The closure was the latest of several store closures by the company in central Ohio in recent years.
  • Due to “rising inflation and supply chain issues,” Giant Eagle decided to enhance its customer loyalty program, having recognized that value has become a necessity for its customers who are on a budget. Its new savings platform, myPerks, offers shoppers up to 20% discounts on over 1,000 of its most frequently purchased fuel and grocery items.

Major Competitors

Tops Markets

  • Tops Markets operates 150 full-service supermarkets across New York, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, including 59 fuel stations.


Brookshire's Food & Pharmacy

  • Brookshire's Food & Pharmacy operates over 180 stores across Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas. The stores operate under four brands—Brookshire’s, Spring Market, Super 1 Foods, and FRESH by Brookshire’s.

Ingles Markets

  • Ingles Markets is a convenience supermarket chain that offers customers a range of nationally advertised food products such as grocery, meat, produce, deli, and bakeries, as well as pharmacies and fuel at most of its over 200 locations.

Additional Facts About Giant Eagle

  • Apart from Ricker Oil Company, other acquisitions and subsidiaries of Giant Eagle include Aetos Construction Company, Butler Refrigerated Meats Inc., Fresh Food Manufacturing Company, Riser Foods Company, and The Tamarkin Company.
  • As announced on March 22, 2022, Giant Eagle is expanding a digital temperature monitoring roll-out—it has now adopted 32,000 new SmartSense digital temperature monitoring devices from Digi International, a leading global IoT connectivity solutions provider. With the roll-out, Giant Eagle is expanding its ability to monitor its critical food assets remotely, automatically, and continuously.

Research Strategy

To identify Giant Eagle's top competitors, we searched for precompiled lists of its top competitors and selected those that offer similar products and/or operate in similar locations across the US.

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