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Sam Duncan will be retiring as president and CEO of Supervalu on Feb. 29, 2016, the end of the Minneapolis-based wholesaler’s fiscal year.
Duncan was named to the post in February 2013 as part of Supervalu’s reconfiguration after the sale of five retail banners to Albertsons, and he was tasked with repositioning the wholesaler’s three core business segments: independent business, Save-A-Lot and five retail food banners.
Citing more time with his family as the reason for his departure, Duncan stated his pride at what the employees of Supervalu have been able to accomplish during his two-and-a-half-year reign. “I am also looking forward to finishing the year strong and continuing to drive sales and cash through my remaining time at the company, as well as providing time and support to ensure a smooth transition for my successor. After 46 years in the grocery and retail business, this is a bittersweet moment,” he said.
Jerry Storch, non-executive chairman of the board, credits Duncan for stabilizing the company after the sale of the banners and turning around Supervalu’s performance with improvements in all three business segments. “The company is in a better place today because of Sam’s leadership. The board is very grateful and appreciative for Sam’s contributions to the company. The board process for naming the next CEO is underway, including consideration of internal and external candidates,” Storch said.
Supervalu also promoted Bruce Besanko to EVP, COO, a newly created role that reports to Duncan. Besanko will retain oversight of the company's finance function as well as assume the oversight of the independent business operations, food banners and merchandising, marketing and pharmacy functions.
Sue Grafton was promoted to EVP, CFO, and will report to Besanko.
Both promotions take effect immediately. None of the moves impact Supervalu’s exploration of separating its Save-A-Lot business.