Food Service & Agriculture, Real Estate, and Retail

Neighborhood market lists for $1.4M

February 21, 2014
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Neighborhood market lists for $1.4M
A look at the “Great Wall” at Kingma’s Market in northeast Grand Rapids. Photo via

A neighborhood market that started out nearly a century ago is up for sale for $1,408,000.

End of family line

Throughout its history, someone bearing the last name Kingma has always owned Kingma’s Market in Grand Rapids, at 2225 Plainfield Ave. NE.

But that legacy will soon be ending, now that the 16,614-square-foot family owned market was put up for sale last month on

Edward and Robert Kingma co-own the market and are the third generation of Kingmas to run the family business.

Now in their early 60s, the two men are looking to retire, and with no Kingma heir showing interest in taking over the family business, they've decided to sell it.

Their children have chosen their “own careers and followed their passions, and that’s okay,” Edward Kingma said. “I told my son, ‘It’d be great to have you in this business, but if that’s not what your passion is, you should not do it."

Good time to sell

“Our desire is that we find someone that would be a very good fit to carry on our philosophy and the style of business we’ve been running for a long time,” Kingma said.

Kingma said that he'd like the market to continue on Plainfield Avenue and closely resemble the business it is today, supporting the community.

“The business is strong and growing, so why step out now? It’s not like I’m overly eager for retirement, but on the other hand, we’re not getting any younger,” Kingma said. “You look at it from the product perspective. Isn’t there no better time to sell a business than when it’s doing well?”

Century of history

William Kingma, an immigrant from the Netherlands, first started the business in 1917, by selling produce up and down the street out of a horse-drawn wagon.

Kingma opened his first store on Division Avenue in the 1930s, according to the page.

The store opened other locations and eventually moved to 1562 Kalamazoo Ave. SE, where it thrived for 47 years, before closing in 1999. The Plainfield Avenue location is the remaining Kingma’s store.

“We’ve loved this business, the relationships we’ve developed and seen grown over the years,” Kingma said. “To see it cut off from the Kingma family is an emotional step, but it’s a reality we’ve needed to face. One of the things we certainly have tried to put forth is a business that is neighborhood friendly. We’ve been blessed the neighborhood has supported us very well.” 

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