Can Rite Aid Save Itself With This Restructuring?

Rite Aid Corp. (NYSE: RAD) announced on Wednesday morning that there will be some changes in its executive leadership as well as some restructuring. At this point, investors are welcoming anything to pull this stock out of the tailspin it has experienced over the past two years.

Excluding Wednesday’s move, Rite Aid had underperformed the broad markets, with its stock down about 4% year to date. However, the charts get worse over the past 52 weeks, with the stock down about 61%. As far back as January 2017, this was an $8 stock.

As part of the leadership transition, John Standley will step down as chief executive officer. The board of directors will promptly commence a search process for a new CEO, and Standley will remain in the position until the appointment of his successor.

Rite Aid also announced additional management changes, each of which is effective immediately:

  • Bryan Everett, chief operating officer of Rite Aid Stores has been promoted to chief operating officer of the company, succeeding Kermit Crawford who is leaving the company.
  • Matt Schroeder, chief accounting officer and treasurer, has been promoted to chief financial officer. Schroeder is succeeding Darren Karst who is leaving the company this spring after supporting a brief transition.
  • Brian Hoover, group vice president and controller, has been promoted to chief accounting officer.
  • Jocelyn Konrad, executive vice president, pharmacy, has been promoted to executive vice president, pharmacy and retail operations.
  • Derek Griffith, executive vice president, store operations is leaving the company.

Separately, Rite Aid announced actions that will reduce managerial layers and consolidate roles across the organization, resulting in the elimination of roughly 400 full-time positions, or more than 20% of the corporate positions located at headquarters and across the field organization. Roughly, two-thirds of the reductions will take place immediately, with the balance by the end of fiscal 2020.

Shares of Rite Aid closed Tuesday at $0.68, in a 52-week range of $0.60 to $2.12. The consensus price target is $0.75. Following the announcement, the stock was up about 10% at $0.74 in early trading indications Wednesday.

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