Mainstreet Market Profits Suffer While C-Stores Flourish

Following a major renovation to become a full-fledged cafeteria, Main Street Market revenue is down $7,000 compared to previous years, while the campus convenience stores total revenue has increased $20,000.

The renovation created a new dining atmosphere in the Student Union Building which Lora Cunningham, Truman State University Sodexo General Manager, says was meant to emulate a traditional food court. From what was once a supermarket-type space came restaurants Chick-Fil-A, Mein Bowl, Wholly Habaneros, and Slice of Life.

Cunningham and Dave Rector, vice president of administration, finance and planning, confirmed the shifts in profits with the new model. With such a large decrease in profit, one might be skeptical about the success rate of the food court. During the transformation, Sodexo removed all aspects of the grocery store theme from Mainstreet Market, making the new Mainstreet Market model less of a dining hall and c-store hybrid and more of a restaurant.

“To compare the new and old model right now is apples and oranges, really,” Cunningham says. “It might as well have been a separate place with all the extra groceries taken out of it.”

Cunningham says she was confident in the Market’s first semester, and she said the dip was expected by not selling c-store-style groceries in the Mainstreet Market. However, Cunningham said the C-Store’s success was a pleasant side effect.

Cunningham said with these new food choices on campus, students have more options for the food groups Sodexo believes they enjoy, aiming to satisfy the most popular food choices: chicken, Asian, Mexican, pizza, and burgers.