c/p from kosher today
Exclusive: “Bingo” a Kosher Costco Concept Set to Open in Boro Park; Owners Hope to Launch New Trend
by KT Staff Reporters
Brooklyn, NY – Aryeh Baum, 47 and Avraham Moshe Margulies 45, owners of the successful Osher Ad chain in Israel, never imagined when they began their ventures nearly two decades ago that they would one day be launching a new shopping concept for kosher in Brooklyn. Kosher Today has learned that the two are set to open a new 70,000 square foot store in about two weeks on 60th Street and 13th Avenue, the site of the now defunct Pathmark. The two also recruited Ari Weiss, the owner of the 24-hour Goldberg’s Kosher Supermarket on 18th Avenue as their U.S. partner. Although the store will be huge and spacious, it will target the price conscious and the bulk buyers, especially the many large families in the area and beyond. Industry sources told Kosher Today that the store, to be called “Bingo” has already negotiated mega deals with kosher manufacturers, including several who agreed to private label for Bingo. The store is set to have a Costco (without the membership) look rather than the appearance of the numerous high-end kosher independent stores that currently dot many Orthodox neighborhoods such as Breadberry which is only several blocks away.
It has been almost two decades since Mr. Baum sold Mr. Margulies on the idea of selling discounted bread and milk early mornings on the streets of Bnei Brak as a way to sell the community these basic staples at discount prices. From the bread and milk came Glatt Market, which became Zol Poh, then Elef, which they managed to partner with the Shufersal chain. Eventually Shufersal’s Fisher and Bronfman bought the successful chain for $35 million. But after taking a respite for a year, the two former yeshiva students were on the move again, this time launching Osher Ad, which while offering a limited selection was nevertheless extremely discounted. To show their affinity with the budget conscious consumer, they even posted signs “Don’t Buy More than You Need!” According to Bloomberg, the initial investment in Bingo was reported to be $9 million, with the annual revenues projected to reach $100 million, a figure several industry experts said was “high” since they would have to do an average of $2 million a week in sales. Osher Ad, which has 15 locations, is Israel’s fourth largest supermarket chain, according to Bloomberg. Kosher industry sources say that while Boro Park will be the initial Bingo store, plans are in the works to expand the new concept to other kosher neighborhoods.