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ZAANDAM, Netherlands - Ahold today announced further steps in its strategic program to streamline the company and improve long-term efficiency.
The Ahold U.S. Retail corporate headquarters, currently located in Chantilly, Va., will close, and Ahold U.S. retail and corporate functions will be aligned with those of the new business arena being created in the Boston area. This arena will integrate the back-office functions of Ahold operating companies Stop & Shop and Giant-Landover. The change will take place in July. Approximately 100 associates are currently employed at Ahold USA corporate headquarters in Chantilly.
In addition, Ahold's regional support organization for European operations, the Zaandam, Netherlands-based European Competence Center (ECC), which currently employs about 115 associates, will also close. Services provided by the ECC will be aligned with the requirements of the Ahold corporate headquarters and the Netherlands arena. This change will occur in March.
"This is part of our stated commitment and strategy to integrate the many different parts of our operations into a single company with a single focus on generating value for customers," said Ahold president and c.e.o. Anders Moberg. "These actions are essential steps that will enable us to simplify and streamline our organization, and ultimately improve our customer offering."
Ahold USA oversees approximately 1,300 supermarkets operated through six retail companies in the United States. As part of Ahold's "Road to Recovery" strategy announced Nov. 7, a new business arena is in the process of being created to combine the administrative and managerial functions of Stop & Shop in the Boston area and Giant Food, LLC in Landover, Md. Ahold USA will now also be part of this arena.
"We are confident that this integration will speed decision-making, better align support services with the needs of the businesses, and provide for more numerous career opportunities for our people," said Ahold USA president and c.e.o. Bill Grize.
The ECC supports the retail and foodservice operations of the four European arenas: The Netherlands, Nordic countries, Central Europe, and Iberia. According to Ahold, the integration of the ECC functions into Ahold corporate headquarters and the Netherlands arena will lead to harmonization and effective business process management, as well as improved and more efficient infrastructure and control activities.