- Save A Lot announced Wednesday that distribution veteran Leon Bergmann will become CEO beginning in March.
- Bergmann has more than 20 years of experience in the wholesale and grocery industries, most recently as the CEO of Sherwood Food Distributors. He succeeds interim CEO Craig Herkert, who took over the top role last July.
- Bergmann, who has worked for several major U.S. food distributors, will help Save A Lot continue its transition towards a wholesale model.
Bergmann brings years of wholesaling experience to a company whose shift toward that industry is still in its early stages.
In just over three years at Sherwood Food Distributors, which is headquartered in Detroit and has offices throughout the eastern U.S., he carried out a “comprehensive growth strategy,” according to the news release. Before that, he briefly served as the president of Supervalu’s western division and spent several years with Unified Grocers. Bergmann also held various positions with C&S Wholesale Grocers.
“Leon combines deep industry expertise and a consistent track record of success at leading grocery brands and wholesale businesses that will be invaluable as we execute against our long-term growth strategy,” said Justin Shaw, Save A Lot's board chairman, in a statement.
Bergmann will take over for interim CEO Craig Herkert, who stepped in last summer after former chief executive Kenneth McGrath left the company to take a top post with Lidl in Germany. Herkert will stay on throughout February to ensure a smooth transition for Bergmann to the CEO post, the company said.
As part of its distribution push, and in an effort to reduce its debt load, Save A Lot has been selling off chunks of stores. Earlier this month, the company sold 33 stores in the greater Orlando, Florida, area to Ascend Grocery. In December 2020, it sold off 51 stores in the Tampa, Florida, area.
Save A Lot is also trying to modernize its image. Last summer, it announced plans to accelerate its store remodeling push and have all locations refreshed by 2024. It also launched an advertising campaign that included a catchy jingle meant to draw attention to the company’s low prices.