By Marty King
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) – LifeWay Christian Stores has begun the process of acquiring Berean Christian Stores, a 17-store chain located primarily in California, Arizona and the Midwest with corporate headquarters in Cincinnati.
“This is a tremendous opportunity,” said Thom S. Rainer, president of LifeWay Christian Resources, the parent company of LifeWay Stores. “Berean, like LifeWay, is known for their commitment to serving church customers. This acquisition will significantly increase LifeWay’s opportunities for ministry across the country.”
LifeWay currently owns 163 stores in 26 states, and will increase to 180 stores in 28 states after finalizing the acquisition.
Tim Vineyard, president of the LifeWay Christian Stores division, said his staff are eagerly looking forward to serving customers in the new markets. “Berean’s mission and product mix are generally very compatible with LifeWay’s,” Vineyard said, “although, of course, we will be making some changes in keeping with our current standards.”
“Berean’s corporate and local store staffs have been excellent partners in selling B&H Publishing’s books and Bibles,” Vineyard said. “If the acquisition goes as planned, we’ll have 17 more stores for all of LifeWay’s Bible studies, church supplies and other resources.”
LifeWay Stores and B&H Publishing are owned by LifeWay Christian Resources based in Nashville, Tenn.
Vineyard said the acquisition should close next month, and LifeWay staff will begin immediately transitioning the Berean stores to LifeWay Christian Stores.
Berean Christian Stores was started in 1934, and purchased by a Christian family in 2009. Seven Berean stores are located in California, two are in Arizona, and there are three stores in Ohio and three in Pennsylvania. There is also one Berean store in Georgia and one in Montana.