Historic ‘Circle Food Store’ purchased by local businessman Sidney Torres

NEW ORLEANS - The 80-year-old business sold for $1.7M at auction on Thursday afternoon.

New Orleans businessman Sidney Torres purchased the Circle Food Store with hopes of keeping it running.

Torres partnered with Fouad El-Jaouhari, who owns and operates stores in the New Orleans area including Magnolia Discount.

The two plan to have the business up and running by the end of 2019, serving as a food hall, similar to the St. Roch market.

According to the former owner, Dwayne Boudreaux, the store opened in 1938 and was one of the country’s oldest African-American-owned groceries.

Boudreaux said his dad started working with the store in 1987 and eventually became the owner.

When Hurricane Katrina hit, the store suffered wind and flood damage, causing it to close its doors.

In 2014, after being closed for nine years, the store announced its grand re-opening.

Boudreaux said he took over the store in May 2017.

Unfortunately since then, several power outages have caused the loss of merchandise and poor drainage systems have caused the store to flood multiple times.

Boudreaux says the debt that has accrued over the years is something he isn't able to handle.

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