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Since its grand opening in 2007, California-based Fresh & Easy lost a lot of money by issuing plentiful store coupons. But then it lost a lot of customers when it discontinued them. It gained a new lease on life when it got new ownership, but its owners gained plenty of headaches by inheriting all of the stores’ inherent weaknesses.

Now, the small-format grocery chain that just can’t seem to win is gaining attention, by losing a whole bunch of underperforming stores.

Fresh & Easy has announced the imminent closing of about 50 locations, or a third of its entire store count.

“Instead of paying to keep stores open that are not ultimately part of the future, in places that we have little chance of profit, we think that we can turn that cash into investment in new stores,” Fresh & Easy CEO Jim Keyes said in a video statement released on Friday.

As is frustratingly typical for Fresh & Easy, word of mass store closings was not quickly followed by a list of affected stores. So shoppers and employees were left to ruminate over rumors all weekend. Even now, the list of affected stores below may not be quite complete.

It’s reminiscent of the last time Fresh & Easy closed dozens of stores en masse. 50 stores were shuttered in late 2013, when British owners Tesco sold the money-losing chain.

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And boy, did it lose money.

Tesco insisted it was onto something when it launched the chain, promising to offer a wide range of grocery products and prepared foods in a convenience store-type setting.

But it bombed. Big time. Tesco lost well over a billion dollars before finally unloading the entire chain to private investment firm Yucaipa Companies LLC, and walking away.

Many blamed the chain’s lackluster performance on its poor format, execution and reliance on money-losing store coupons that customers came to expect. So among the first things Yucaipa did was to refurbish and reposition the stores – and get rid of the coupons.

And in what was both a weakness and a selling point, many stores were located in less-than-prime locations. Among those locations were “food deserts” that had few other available options for groceries. And now those are some of the very stores that are on the hit list. “Please don’t close the Compton store in California,” one Facebook fan pleaded. “We need this store in our community.”

But Compton is only one community in California, Nevada and Arizona that will have to live without its Fresh & Easy. Here’s the most complete list of store closings at the moment:

Phoenix, AZ12th Street and Bell Road
Phoenix, AZ48th Street and Ray Road
Phoenix, AZ40th Street and Camelback Road
Scottsdale, AZScottsdale Road and Shea Boulevard
Tempe, AZBaseline and Kyrene Rds
Arcadia, CAFoothill Blvd & Second Ave
Azusa, CAAlosta & Citrus
Bakersfield, CAPanama Lane and Stine Road
Bakersfield, CAStockdale Highway and California Avenue
Buena Park, CAValley View & La Palma
Camarillo, CAArneill Rd & Las Posas Rd
Chino Hills, CAChino Hills Pkwy & Eucalyptus Ave
Clovis, CAHerndon and Fowler Aves.
Compton, CACentral & Rosecrans
Concord, CA5410 Ygnacio Valley Rd.
Corona, CAOntario & Rimpau
Costa Mesa, CANewport Blvd & Harbor Blvd
Danville, CADiablo Road and I-680
Fresno, CACedar and Nees
Fresno, CAShaw and West Aves.
Hayward, CAHesperian Boulevard & A Street
Hermosa Beach, CAPacific Coast Hwy & 8th St
Jurupa Valley, CALimonite Ave & Clay St
La Habra, CABeach Blvd & Whittier Blvd
La Mirada, CAImperial & Santa Gertrudes
Lakewood, CAWoodruff & South
Lompoc, CA1009 North H St.
Long Beach, CASpring Street & Palo Verde Avenue
Los Angeles, CAPalos Verdes & Western
Los Angeles, CACentral & Adams
Newbury Park, CAWendy Drive & Old Conejo Rd
Northridge, CATampa Ave & Nordhoff St
Oak Park, CALindero Canyon Rd & Kanan Rd
Ontario, CAEuclid Ave & Philadelphia St
Oxnard, CARose Ave. & Gonzales Rd
Pacifica, CACabrillo Hwy. and Linda Mar Boulevard
Pasadena, CACalifornia Blvd. & Lake Ave
Pleasanton, CARosewood Drive and Santa Rita Road
Rancho Cucamonga, CAFoothill Blvd & Vineyard Ave
Rancho Cucamonga, CAFoothill Blvd & Day Creek Blvd
Riverside, CAArlington & Madison
San Francisco, CASilver Avenue and Goettingen Street
Tujunga, CAFoothill Blvd & Pali Ave
Upland, CA8th Street & Mountain Ave
Vacaville, CAElmira Road and Nut Tree Road
Ventura, CATelegraph Rd & Day Rd
Walnut Creek, CA1827 Ygnacio Valley Rd.
Walnut Park, CAAlameda St & Florence Ave
Westminster, CAGoldenwest & McFadden
Walnut Creek, CAYgnacio Valley Road and San Carlos Drive
Las Vegas, NVTropicana and Jones
Las Vegas, NVCentennial and Simmons

Photo by Fruitnet.com

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