A Southern Season in Chapel Hill has new owner

Launched in 1975, the gourmet store has some 300 employees. Founder Michael Barefoot sells it to a group of local investors but will stay involved with the store.

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A Southern Season
CHAPEL HILL, N.C.A Southern Season, a cultural and retail institution in Chapel Hill as a widely known gourmet store with some 300 employees, has new owners.

Founder Michael Barefoot, who opened the store in 1975, sold it to a group of local investors. TC Capital Fund, formed by Carrboro Capital Corporation and Tryon Capital, is the owner.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

The sale was finalized on Aug. 1, according to a press release.

A Southern Season also publishes a catalog and sells goods nationwide through e-commerce.

Barefoot will remain involved in A Southern Season for the next five years, he said in a statement.

Veteran financier and entrepreneur Clay Hamner, who is part of Carrboro Capital Corporation, is a long-time customer of the store and said he plans to expand the business.

“We are pleased to join forces with the A Southern Season team and help the company continue to build upon its core tenants of educating about food and creating a one-of-a kind, entertaining shopping experience that exceeds customers’ expectations,” Hamner said.

“We will re-invest significantly to grow the business, including enhancing the retail shopping experience, expanding existing product lines and bringing in new products to surprise and delight our customers, as well as expanding and enhancing our online shopping experience,” he added.

Larry Shaw, a veteran executive at Nordstrom and The Vermont Country Store, takes over as president of A Southern Season. He lives in Chapel Hill.

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