Jim Donald, a former President and CEO of Starbucks, was named President and CEO of Albertsons Cos., effective immediately. Current Albertsons CEO Robert Miller will remain with the company as Chairman of the Board.
Continuing in the role as President at Albertsons, Donald was most recently COO of the food and drug retailer. He also previously served as CEO at both Haggen and Extended Stay America, as well as holding leadership roles at Walmart, Safeway and Pathmark Stores.
The leadership shakeup at Albertsons follows the cancellation of its $24 billion merger with Rite Aid in August. The deal had been criticized for bringing together two high-debt, low-margin retailers, and analysts suggested their priority should be improving their current operations.
“In our view, Albertsons should focus on investing in and boosting its existing business rather than getting involved in corporate deals,” said Neil Saunders, Managing Director at GlobalData Retail in a statement. “The deal was simply an acquisition that would have added some new revenue to Albertsons while injecting another entity into an already overly-complex corporate structure.”
Albertsons has been working to improve its grocery delivery options through the launch of O Organics Market, a virtual grocery store created through a partnership with Instacart. The service is putting a focus on organic, natural and other better-for-you foods.