BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Bruno's here last week unveiled a restructuring of its management hierarchy geared to improving local merchandising and format effectiveness.
the retailer merged with a subsidiary of New York-based investment firm KKR last August. Bolton told analysts last November that he was moving the chain's share of private label closer to industry standards, improving the retailer's balance sheet and increasing the focus on technology.
Last week the company said it is decentralizing operations by doubling its field specialists from 21 to 42 and giving each expanded responsibilities for in-store merchandising and training. It is simultaneously streamlining personnel by reducing the number of district managers from 22 to 13 "to enable each store manager to feel he's running his own business," a company official told SN. According to the company, the new organization is intended to empower store managers to be more responsive to consumer needs and to improve the chain's focus on store formats. The chain said the moves will improve customer service, provide more flexibility and authority for employees at store level, enhance human resources support services and focus on in-store merchandising.
Under the new operational structure, the 254-store chain said it would divide operating responsibilities among three former regional vice presidents who will carry the new title of vice president and general manager. They are: · David Shoemaker, vice president and general manager of 44 Bruno's and 14 FoodMax stores in Alabama, Georgia, Florida and Tennessee. · Marvin D. Young, vice president and general manager of 84 Food World locations and eight FoodMax units in Alabama, Mississippi and Florida. · Samie Manzella, vice president and general manager of 55 Piggly Wiggly stores, 31 Food Fairs, 15 FoodMax, two Fresh Value units and one Consumer Warehouse Foods in Alabama and Georgia.
Bruno's is a combination-store format at most locations, while Food World is a conventional format; FoodMax combines elements of Bruno's and Food World; Food Fair and Piggly Wiggly are neighborhood stores, and Fresh Value is a conventional format with an emphasis on perishables. Michael L. Chandler, a fourth regional vice president under the previous structure, has been named to the new post of director of operations services, with responsibilities for assisting in the development of each store format and determining how that format accomplishes its marketing and merchandising goals. Shoemaker, Young, Manzella and Chandler will continue to report to David B. Clark, senior vice president of operations. In another change, Bruno's said it is creating two other new posts -- director of human resources and director of merchandising and marketing -- neither of which has been filled yet. According to Clark, "These changes have been carefully thought out to meet our No. 1 priority, which is taking care of our customers. "This streamlined and decentralized organization will better enable Bruno's to stay in touch with our customers and more effectively meet their needs and product demands. "The net results of the reorganization will be a slight increase in [the number of] positions, especially at field levels, which will allow our stores to be more responsive to our customers in today's very competitive environment."