CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Publix announced plans Wednesday to open a grocery store in Ballantyne in early 2014, marking the company's first move into North Carolina.

The store will be located at Providence Road West and Johnston Road just south of Ballantyne Country Club. An exact date of its grand opening is unknown, but the company said it is planned for sometime in early 2014, depending on construction, permits, weather and other factors.

Our customers and associates have long asked us to come to North Carolina, said CEO Ed Crenshaw. We look forward to providing the Charlotte community with the high quality service and products that our customers have come to expect and that have earned us recognition throughout the industry.

Publix has more than 1,000 grocery stores across South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama and Tennessee. It currently has 45 stores in South Carolina.

The company has already brought stores near Charlotte but south of the state border. New stores in Fort Mill and Indian Land are expected to bring 1,800 jobs to the area.

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