Personnel Updates

America’s Food Basket hired former Ahold executive David Siegel as its new CEO; he previously held positions at Marsh Supermarkets and Price Chopper.

Albertsons’ Chief Administrative Officer Justin Dye has left the company while Chief Operating Officer Wayne Denningham has added President to his title. Karl Varsanyi has been hired as VP of Digital Product Management.

Kroger announced that Senior VP Retail Divisions Sukanya Madlinger is retiring from the company succeeded by Calvin Kaufman, President of Kroger’s Louisville division. Ann Reed, VP Customer 1st Promise will succeed Kaufman as President of Kroger’s Louisville division.

SPAR Group, Inc. announced that CEO Scott Popaditch has resigned. Effective immediately, current Chief Operating Officer, Kori G. Belzer, will serve as interim-CEO.

Tops Friendly promoted Edward Rick to the role of Director, Consumer Marketing & Digital.

Pilot Flying J named Whitney Haslam-Johnson Chief Experience Officer.


Industry Insight

Ahold will close nine Martin’s Food Markets stores in Virginia. The company attempted to find a buyer for the stores after selling half of the chain to Publix Super Markets.

LIDL opened its first discount grocery stores in the U.S.

Publix plans to launch same-day grocery delivery across all Publix locations with Instacart; the service will be fully rolled out by 2020.

Sprouts Farmers Market plans to roll out an enhanced deli program in 50 new and existing stores this year. Improvements include a full-service case of freshly prepared protein and sides, a salad bar, fresh juices and soup stations.

Sprouts Farmers Market plans to expand its Amazon Prime Now deliveries to new markets.

Wegmans Food Markets is partnering with grocery delivery service Instacart to add same-day deliveries of online orders to its e-commerce offerings. Delivery service will be available in certain markets in Virginia and Maryland.

Real Estate

ALDI is planning to spend $180 million to remodel most of its150 stores in Chicago over the next three years. Enhancements will include more space for private-label organic and natural products.

Kroger will open a new 45,000-square-foot urban-format store. The mixed-use development space will include two levels, a bar, a food hall, third-party restaurants and prepared-food vendors with expected completion in 2019.

SUPERVALU reopened three Cub stores in the Minneapolis area following remodels. Enhancements include organic and grab-and-go offerings, new store designs and signage, an increased in self-checkouts and a broader range of deli offerings.


Mergers and Acquisitions

Amazon will acquire Whole Foods Market in a deal valued at $13.7 billion or $42 per share, the companies said. Whole Foods will remain a separate brand while CEO John Mackey will remain with the company. The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2017.