“Mark’s impact on our operation in 2015 was immediate. He brought a wealth of industry experience with him when he joined our team that makes him a natural fit to lead GM and H&BA in addition to his current responsibilities,” said Shane Sampson, executive vice president and chief marketing and merchandising officer. “We are completely committed to offering unique and innovative products that meet customers’ changing preferences throughout the store, including GM and H&BA. I know Mark will tackle the responsibilities in these high-growth categories with the same enthusiasm he has brought to our pharmacy and health and wellness operation.”
“Health and wellness reaches well beyond the pharmacy and further into a traditional grocery store,” said Panzer. “As customers move to take more control of their health care, retailers need to pivot quickly to support their diverse needs. Our teams understand their customers’ needs better than anyone in the business, and by combining our pharmacy, health and wellness, GM and H&BA teams, we’ll be well positioned to serve our customers across our diverse market areas.”
Before joining Albertsons in May, Panzer was president and chief executive officer of Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy Inc.
His move to Albertsons marked the second time in a little over a year that he left the CEO post at Pharmaca to lead the pharmacy operation at a larger retailer. In February 2014, Sears Holdings Corp. announced that Panzer had joined the company as senior vice president and president of pharmacy, overseeing Kmart’s pharmacy business. However, Panzer rejoined Pharmaca as president and CEO in June of that year, according to a Pharmaca spokeswoman, who noted that he had remained on Pharmaca’s board of directors.
Panzer’s retail career began over 40 years ago at Osco Drug. He moved into regional sales and marketing and regional operations roles for Osco, eventually serving as district manager and director and, subsequently, vice president of sales and marketing for American Drug Stores. He was appointed senior vice president of sales and marketing for Albertsons after its 1999 merger with American Stores.
In 2001, Panzer left the company to join Rite Aid Corp. as executive vice president of store operations, and in 2005 he was named Rite Aid’s senior executive vice president and chief marketing officer. He joined Pharmaca in 2008 as chief operating officer and was appointed CEO in 2009.
Albertsons has stores in 36 states and the District of Columbia under 18 banners including Safeway, Vons, Jewel-Osco, Shaw’s, Acme, Tom Thumb, Randalls, United Supermarkets, Pavilions, Star Market and Carrs.