Lori Raya, the division president for Albertsons who led the post-merger transition with Safeway, is the new chief merchandising and marketing officer for SpartanNash.
She succeeds Larry Pierce, who plans to retire in September, according to a news release.
Pierce will assist with the transition and work on special projects until that time. He had been executive vice president of merchandising and marketing since 2014.
“Ms. Raya will be responsible for the development and execution of the enterprise-wide merchandising and marketing strategy, ensuring alignment with the enterprise’s overall business strategy, and providing strategic direction to develop, analyze, and implement product assortment, brand positioning, sales planning, pricing, promotion, sourcing, and distribution for independent customers and corporate owned stores,” SpartanNash wrote in the release. “This oversight includes directing in-depth research and analysis of consumer trends and sales performance and driving innovation to enhance the customer experience in store and online.”
She is also expected to grow sales, market share, productivity and profitability.
Raya spent more than 30 years with Safeway. She started her career as a store associate and served in several food category senior management roles before becoming the division president of Vons and then division president of Albertsons.
“Lori’s success as a strategic thinker, collaborative influencer, change manager, community contributor and visionary leader has enabled her to lead marketing and merchandising teams to deliver innovative, customer-focused changes while driving sales and supporting associate development,” David Staples, president and CEO of SpartanNash, said in the release. “Her career path is also inspiring to all those who love this industry and want to help take the company to the next level. We look forward to having her on board.”