When Albertsons' board of directors selected Larry Johnston, a 28-year veteran of General Electric, to be chairman and chief executive officer of the supermarket company in April 2001, analysts were optimistic that he would bring "a breath of fresh air" to the industry. Four years later, the company is on the auction block and is expected to disintegrate into several smaller pieces through sales to multiple parties. Whether Johnston will end up succeeding in his pledge to "increase ...

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