Rite Aid names former Walgreens exec as COO
Rite Aid Corp. appointed a Walgreens veteran to its executive team.
Rite Aid on Thursday named Kermit Crawford as president and COO, effective Oct. 5. Crawford enjoyed a long, 30-year career with Walgreens, most recently as executive VP and president of pharmacy health and wellness. Most recently, he served as a retail and healthcare adviser and consultant for Sycamore Partners, a New York City-based private equity firm.
“Kermit is a highly experienced retail pharmacy industry executive with exceptional leadership capabilities,” said Rite Aid chairman and CEO John Standley. “This is an especially important time for Rite Aid as we move forward as a stand-alone company within the retail chain drug and healthcare industries and I am extremely pleased to have such an innovative and well-respected senior executive joining our Rite Aid leadership team as we move forward to successfully drive our business."
During his more than 30 years with Walgreens, Crawford held a wide range of store operations and senior management positions, including responsibility for the company’s pharmacy services, which included its pharmacy benefit management services. When he retired from Walgreens in 2014, Crawford was executive VP and president of Walgreen’s pharmacy, health and wellness division, where he was responsible for all aspects of strategic, operational and financial management for the division.
Retailers support new tax reform proposal
The National Retail Federation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association are throwing its support behind the tax reform proposal released Wednesday by the Trump administration and congressional leadership.
According to the NRF, the measure could provide a major boost for the nation’s economy.
"We look forward to hearing more details but this is a very positive step forward to achieving the kind of comprehensive tax reform that is needed to keep our nation’s economy competitive in the global environment,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. “This plan would provide much-needed relief for corporations, small businesses and middle-class individuals alike, and would help draw foreign capital and investment to the United States. This is the framework we need to unlock job creation and economic growth.”
RILA executive VP of government affairs Jennifer Safavian said the framework for the new proposal represents an "historic opportunity" to fix a broken tax code and boost economic growth.
"Today's announcement from the Administration, House and Senate leadership, and the Chairmen of the tax-writing Committees on a framework to overhaul our current system is a step in the right direction to put money back into family budgets and keep America competitive in the global marketplace," she stated. "Despite being one of our country's top economic drivers, America's retailers face an average domestic tax rate of 36.7% — nearly 10 percentage points higher than the average for all industries. Tax reform that scrutinizes credits and deductions not applicable to all taxpayers and flattens rates for all will spur investment, job creation, and consumer savings."
Pier I loss widens in Q2
Pier 1 Imports Inc. reported a wider-than-expected loss in its second quarter and forecast a smaller per-share profit for the year that analysts had expected.
Pier 1 lost $7.8 million, or 10 cents a share, compared with a loss of $4 million, or 5 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Adjusted for one-time items, the company reported a loss of 5 cents a share in the quarter.
Revenue rose 0.4% to $407.6 million, compared with $405.8 million in the same period last year. Analysts had expected a loss of 6 cents a share on sales of $407 million, and a rise of 0.7% for comparable-store sales.
Same-store sales rose 1.8% in the quarter. E-commerce sales penetration reached 27%.
Alasdair James, president and CEO, noted that the company achieved solid top-line performance and year-over-year improvement in merchandise margin in a challenging retail environment.
"However, this level of performance does not reflect our expectations for the business," he said. "We believe there is far greater potential ahead to optimize the Pier 1 Imports brand and improve our long-term profitability.”
Pier I updated its full-year outlook to "reflect the anticipated impact" of hurricanes Harvey and Irma" on the third quarter. The company expects full-year earnings in the range of 31 cents to 41 cents per share. Analysts had expected a fiscal 2018 EPS of 46 cents a share.