Whole Foods Moving Away From Co-CEO Structure
Whole Foods has been run by two CEOs for six years, but on Wednesday, the company announced that it’s shifting to a single CEO. Co-founder John Mackey will become the sole CEO at the end of the year. The other co-CEO, Walter Robb, will remain on Whole Foods’ board and be a senior adviser to the company. Sales at the natural food grocer fell 2.6 percent at established stores in the fiscal fourth quarter — worse than the 2 percent drop analysts predicted.
Total Retail’s Take: Whole Foods is hurting from increased competition from other grocery stores, big-box chains and delivery services. Amazon is planning to open 20 of its own grocery stores in the next year, and Wal-Mart and Target are looking to expand their grocery businesses. Whole Foods’ execs have said the grocer will not participate “in a race to the bottom” when it comes to prices, but have launched a lower-priced 365 by Whole Foods Market and a digital coupon app for flagship stores.