business news in context, analysis with attitude

In an interview with the Idaho Statesman, departing Albertsons CEO Larry Johnston offers perspective on his tenure as CEO with the company:

“Any regrets? No, I have really enjoyed my time at Albertsons. ... When we arrived in 2001, we found a large company reeling from a strained merger and in serious trouble. ... Over the past several years our team has executed the largest restructuring in the history of our industry by closing or selling over 600 underperforming stores that lost money, consolidating divisions from 20 to seven, re-engineering our technology infrastructure, eliminating redundant layers of management, removing over $1 billion in cost from the system and consummating the acquisition of Shaw's in New England.

“…During the most recent three fiscals years that the new leadership team has been in place (FY 2002, 2003, 2004) Albertsons outperformed our largest traditional grocery competitors in ... cumulative earnings, sales and free cash flow. ...

“I am very proud of what we accomplished, and I believe that with this transaction and this combination with Supervalu, the best is truly yet to come.”
KC's View:
We suspect that if you asked most of Albertsons employees, they’d respond that it was better for Johnston than it was for them.

In other words, they think they got screwed.

They’re just hoping that the new relationship with Supervalu is more mutually satisfying.