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Martindale leaves Rite Aid for GNC

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CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid Corp. president and CEO of stores Ken Martindale is leaving the company to become chief executive officer of GNC Holdings Inc.

Rite Aid said Wednesday that with Martindale’s departure, Bryan Everett, currently executive vice president in charge of store operations, has been named chief operating officer of Rite Aid stores. In the newly created position, Everett will oversee the company’s store operations, merchandising, distribution and logistics and report to Rite Aid chairman and CEO John Standley.

Martindale joined Rite Aid December 2008 as senior executive vice president of merchandising, marketing and logistics. He was part of a triumvirate of executives — along with Standley and former chief financial and administrative officer Frank Vitrano — who led Rite Aid’s financial turnaround, including the development and rollout of the drug chain’s successful Wellness Store format. Martindale was appointed senior executive vice president and COO in 2010, promoted to president and COO in June 2013, and became CEO of Rite Aid Stores in August 2015. He also serves as president of the Rite Aid Foundation. Before joining Rite Aid, Martindale was co-president and chief merchandising and marketing officer for Pathmark Stores Inc.

“We wish to thank Ken for his significant contributions to our company since joining Rite Aid in 2008,” Standley said in a statement. “We have all benefitted from the opportunity to have worked with Ken, and we wish him the very best in his future endeavors.”

At Pittsburgh-based GNC, Martindale succeeds interim CEO Bob Moran, who was elected nonexecutive chairman. GNC said the board will work closely with Martindale to ensure a smooth leadership transition and continue the vitamin and dietary supplement chain’s transformation plan. With the appointment of Martindale, Michael Hines will step down as chairman but remain on the board. The changes take effect Sept. 11.

“I have a deep admiration for GNC, the tremendous brand they’ve built and, in particular, the successful work they’re doing to fundamentally transform the business model,” Martindale stated. “I’m excited to work with Bob and the team to build on the momentum they’ve created.”

GNC has about 9,000 locations overall. Approximately 6,800 stores are in the United States, including 2,378 Rite Aid franchise store-within-a-store locations. GNC also has franchise operations in about 50 countries.

“Ken is a proven leader with deep retail expertise, intimate knowledge of our business through his years of leadership with our partner Rite Aid and a record of success in transforming retail business models,” Hines commented. “I want to thank Bob for stepping in as interim CEO and for putting GNC on the right path. I am confident that Ken, with the support of the talented GNC team, Bob and the rest of the board, will continue to deliver improved performance and drive value for shareholders.”

A 20-year retail veteran, Everett joined Rite Aid in August 2015 from Target Corp., where he was senior vice president of store operations. In that role, he focused on talent management, operational efficiency and integrated technology solutions. In addition, he led new format, new store and remodeling programs while also overseeing pharmacy and clinic operations. Before joining Target in 2002, Everett held store operations management positions at Fleming Wholesale and Aldi Inc.

“Since joining Rite Aid two years ago, Bryan has had a significant, positive impact on Rite Aid’s store operations as well as in other areas of our business,” Standley stated. “His exceptional leadership skills, strong industry knowledge and his proven track record of operational expertise and success make him the right person to lead key areas of our organization during this important time as we move forward to drive our business, create a great customer experience and deliver value for our stakeholders.”

Overall, Rite Aid operates more than 4,500 stores in 31 states and the District of Columbia.


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