Former Fresh & Easy, Wal-Mart Exec Joins Walgreens

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Former Fresh & Easy, Wal-Mart Exec Joins Walgreens

Bryan Pugh, former co-vice president for operations at Tesco USA's Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets, has joined Walgreen's as the drug chain's new v.p. of format development.

Pugh, who reportedly abruptly left Fresh & East this summer, will focus on food items, paper products and other consumables.

Pugh has more than 25 years of experience in food and general merchandise retailing, including store and regional operations, buying and merchandise planning, distribution and supply chain, store design and construction and mergers and acquisitions. He designed the Fresh & Easy store operations model, and launched its West Coast rollout, which grew to 90 locations in less than a year.

Prior to his most recent three-year stint with Tesco USA, Pugh launched three new retail formats in Thailand for Tesco Thailand.

Before Tesco, Pugh spent six years with CP Group of Asia, opening hypermarkets in China and Thailand and having responsibility for all purchasing.

From 1985 to 1993, he worked for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., moving up from an assistant store manager in the Sam's Club division to vice president of membership marketing.

Aside from Pugh, two other senior executives have joined the Deerfield, Ill.-based during chain: Colin F. Watts, as v.p./president of Walgreens Health and Wellness disease management; and Jeffrey J. Zavada, as new v.p./chief sales officer, who is charged with selling health care services to managed care organizations and other payors.

Gregory D. Wasson, Walgreens' president/c.o.o., said each of the men "will play a critical role in executing our growth strategies...[with] a stronger blend of external perspective and internal expertise."

Walgreens, the nation's largest drugstore chain with fiscal 2008 sales of $59 billion, operates 6,630 drugstores in 49 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.