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    Ritchie Casteel Leaving Save-A-Lot

    Move seen as sign of chain's looming spin-off from Supervalu

    Ritchie Casteel, president of Save-A-Lot, will be leaving his post at the hard-discount grocery chain effective March 11, according to published reports.

    Minneapolis-based Supervalu Inc., parent company of St. Louis-based Save-A-Lot, does not intend to hire a replacement for Casteel, according to a regulatory filing reported by the St. Louis Business Journal.

    A Supervalu spokesman did not immediate return PG’s request for comment.

    Casteel took the helm at Save-A-Lot, Supervalu’s popular value-price chain, in February 2013. He served as both president and CEO until Eric Claus took over as CEO in January.

    Casteel is eligible for severance and could be in line for $1.29 million for termination without cause, the St. Louis Business Journal reported.

    Supervalu announced last July it was exploring strategic alternatives for Save-A-Lot, for which it has filed a plan to spin off the chain. Claus’ chief task when joining the banner was to separate Save-A-Lot from its parent. 

    Casteel began his retail career as a courtesy clerk for Albertsons’ Southern California Division, and then spent the next 33 years with the company in positions of increasing responsibility, primarily in the areas of merchandising and operations.

    In 2004, he completed his tenure as VP of operations for Albertsons’ Intermountain West Division. Following his career at Albertsons, he provided expertise and leadership to Associated Retail Stores of Salt Lake City and Green Bay, Wis.-based Shopko Stores. Later, he served as director of sales and operations for Grocery Outlet of Berkeley, Calif., from 2005 to 2009, where he worked closely with independent owner-operators to improve sales, margin, shrink, operating standards, marketing, expense controls and financial balance.

    "One of the keys to our brand identity is to have one of the best selected grocery assortments in the industry," Casteel told PG in 2013. "We have worked aggressively to broaden our appeal and create more consistency in our product assortment, store appearance and operating standards in our licensed and corporate-operated stores."

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