Albertsons sets restructuring, makes executive changes

by Staff
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BOISE, IDAHO — Albertsons, Inc. today announced changes in its organizational structure that are designed to improve execution, broaden spans of leadership for key senior executives and drive further improvements in efficiency, company officials said. As a result, the company's supply chain, food operations and Six Sigma Quality functions are being reorganized.

Bob Dunst, 44, currently executive vice-president and chief technology officer, will add responsibility for the company's supply chain organization, becoming executive vice-president-technology and supply chain. The added responsibility includes procurement, inventory management, distribution, warehousing and logistics.

The company believes that technology and the supply chain will continue to become increasingly interdependent through advances such as eProcurement, RFID, satellite routing systems, WiFi shopping devices and web grocery expansion, among others, officials said. This evolution makes the marriage of these two functions more strategically important than ever before, they said.

Mr. Dunst, who joined Albertsons in 2001, built a career with IBM, Food4Less, American Stores and Safeway. He holds a degree in mathematics from Villanova University.

Clarence Gabriel, formerly executive vice-president-supply chain and asset management, is leaving the company to pursue other interests.

In food operations, Paul Gannon, 52, currently executive vice-president and chief marketing officer, will add responsibility for all the company's food operations. As executive vice-president-marketing and food operations, Mr. Gannon’s added responsibility includes food division operations, asset protection and customer service. As a result, the company's food banners (Acme, Albertsons, Jewel, Shaw's, and Star Market) as well as all six related food divisions will report directly to Mr. Gannon.

Mr. Gannon, who joined Albertsons in 2004, was previously the president and chief executive officer of Shaw's Supermarkets, a $4.5 billion New England grocery company with 200-plus stores and 30,000-plus associates. During his 14 years at Shaw's, he led information technology, finance, marketing and real estate and also served as chief operating officer before being named c.e.o.

Previously, he worked for Andersen Consulting, Hills Department Stores and Shaw's. Mr. Gannon holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and a master's degree from the University of Southern California. Gannon now

Bob Butler, formerly executive vice-president-food operations, has decided to retire after 31 years of service.

Felicia Thornton, 41, executive vice-president and chief financial officer, will now add responsibility for the company's Six Sigma Quality program and the Office of Enterprise Program Management. More than a year ago, Albertsons became the first company in the food and drug industry to launch a company-wide Six Sigma Quality program.

Before joining Albertsons in 2001, Ms. Thornton built a diverse career with companies such as Proctor & Gamble, Paramount Pictures, Stride Rite and the Kroger Company. She holds an undergraduate degree from Santa Clara University and an M.B.A. from the University of Southern California.

Mr. Dunst, Mr. Gannon and Ms.Thornton will all serve as members of the company's executive council.

Larry Johnston, Albertsons chairman, c.e.o. and president, commented, "These changes will drive higher levels of organizational efficiency as we consolidate management of these critically important functions under three of our talented senior leaders. As the company's strategic plan continues to evolve, these moves will also help increase our focus on customers in local markets, improve program execution, and enhance the experience base of our senior leadership team."

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