Supervalu Realigns Jewel-Osco Store Leadership Structure

Supervalu’s Chicago-based Jewel-Osco subsidiary is cutting 110 store director positions amid a realigned store leadership model to become more efficient and competitive in the marketplace.

“Historically, Jewel-Osco has operated its retail locations with two store directors — one to manage the Jewel food side of the business, and another to handle Osco drug operations,” Supervalu spokeswoman Haley Meyer told Progressive Grocer. “The company will move to a new structure in which the standard will include a single store director who is responsible for the entire store operation.”

Meyer stressed that the realignment is consistent with industry standards, and will subsequently result in the net reduction of 110 store director positions across the banner. All affected associates will receive a severance package.

Contrary to published reports that Supervalu is paring selection at stores by as much as 20 percent across any and all product categories, Meyer said the changes underway at Jewel-Osco are in line with new directions its parent, Minneapolis-based Supervalu, is making as part of a “category-by-category review of our product assortments, to ensure we’re operating as efficiently as possible and making our stores easy to shop.”

Further, while the company’s CEO, Craig Herkert, has revealed his intentions to grow Supervalu’s edited-assortment Save-A-Lot banner, Meyer said Supervalu has “not specifically said where that growth will occur. Instead … we’ll be looking at all markets to determine the best growth strategy.”

Chicago’s longtime market leader, Jewel-Osco operates 185 stores in an increasingly competitive marketplace where it has long faced off with top grocery rival Dominick’s, a division of Safeway, as well as a continued encroachment from the likes of Wal-Mart Stores Inc.; Target; and Aldi, as well as other new stores poised to open in the region in the coming year.
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