Personnel Updates:

A & P announced that Sam Martin, President and CEO, has left the company. Gregory Mays, Chairman, is serving as interim CEO until a successor can be found.

Buehler’s Fresh Foods has promoted the COOs of its two divisions to President: Dan Shanahan as President of the 14-store supermarket division and Scott Buehler as President of E&H Hardware Group.

C&K Market Inc. said Greg Sandeno, President and CEO plans to leave the company at the end of the month, following the company’s file for bankruptcy in November. The company said day-to-day operations will be handled by Edward Hostmann, its Chief Restructuring Officer, and Rocky Campbell, operations VP, until a new CEO is named.

C&S Wholesale Grocers announced the hiring of Mark Verdi, most recently a managing director at Bain Capital in charge of its Global Portfolio Group, to be the company’s President, a new position. Verdi will take over day-to-day operational responsibilities from Rick Cohen, C&S’s chairman/CEO, who will focus more on strategy and innovation responsibilities.

Coborn’s Inc. has hired Target Corp. veteran Lisa Ellis as Director of Real Estate, according to local reports.

Jewel-Osco’s William Emmons is retiring from his role as President. Jim Rice, VP Operations at Jewel-Osco, will run the chain on an interim basis until a replacement is found.

The Kroger Co. said this summer Van Tarver, VP of its convenience stores division and supermarket petroleum group, will retire from the company in August. As a result of Tarver’s upcoming retirement, Jeff Parker has been promoted to President of convenience stores and small format, effective immediately. Tarver will continue to oversee the supermarket petroleum group. His replacement will be named at a later date, according to the company.

Schnuck Markets said Todd Schnuck would succeed his brother Scott Schnuck as the retailer’s CEO in March. At the same time, Anthony Hucker will assume Todd Schnuck’s former role as COO, Schnucks said. Scott Schnuck, 63, will continue to serve as chairman and will assist Todd, 55, in the transition through September. In addition, their older brother Craig Schnuck, 65, will formally retire and become chairman emeritus.

Riesbeck Food Markets said it has named Jennifer R. Kiger Treasurer of the family-owned chain.

Sheetz VP of Sales and Marketing, David Woodley, moved into the VP spot vacated by Louie Sheetz this week. Woodley has led the Sheetz sales and marketing department since 2005. The transition became effective Jan. 1 as another part of the company’s planned leadership changes. Louie Sheetz announced his retirement shortly after it was made public that Joe S. Sheetz would become President and CEO as Stan Sheetz took the title of chairman of the board.

Supervalu said that Gerald Storch has been elected Chairman of the company’s board, succeeding Robert Miller, who is resigning “to focus on other demands.”


Financial Focus:

Ahold USA reported fiscal 2013 U.S. sales of $26.1 billion.


Industry Insight:

Mars Super Markets will close a Baltimore distribution center in March, opting to outsource supply and distribution to Bozzuto’s. The 17-store independent chain made the decision because of “ever-increasing competition in the grocery business and to remain competitive with large regional and national chains,” CEO Chris D’Anna said. The closure will displace 78 workers, but Mars says it hopes to work with Bozzuto’s to rehire as many as possible.

Roundy’s is closing two more Rainbow Foods in the Minneapolis area, bringing the number down to 27 stores. Roundy’s acquired Rainbow Foods in 2003 and intended to sell it but was unable to find a buyer.

Mergers and Acquisitions:

Arden Group, parent company of Gelson’s Market, said it has entered into a definitive agreement to merge the 17-store chain into TPG, a global private-investment firm, in a cash transaction valued at approximately $394 million.

Whole Foods has recently acquired six Dominick’s stores, while Jewel may buy as many as 16 Dominick’s locations. The news comes as suitors for the remainder of Safeway’s Dominick’s stores in Chicago, which are now shuttering their doors, are beginning to come forward.


Real Estate:

Aldi is increasing its new store development with a goal of 650 new stores in the next five years. Aldi plans to open a regional headquarters and distribution center in Moreno Valley, Calif., as part of an aggressive five-year growth strategy that also includes 650 new U.S. stores, the company announced. An average of 130 stores will open each year, up from the current average of 80. “We’re ramping up our expansion plans to meet growing demand,” said President Jason Hart.

Kwik Trip Inc. is expected to grow across the Midwest this year, with 34 new stores slated to open or under construction. According to the company, of the new stores scheduled to open in 2014, it is planning eight locations in the Twin Ports market of Minnesota. Kwik Trip will open three convenience store/gas station combos in Superior, two in Duluth, two in Hermantown and one in Scanlon.