March 13 (UPI) -- Rite Aid plans to eliminate hundreds of jobs in a restructuring plan that will also replace its CEO and several key positions, the pharmacy chain said.
CEO John Standley is leaving but will remain in the post until his replacement is made, Rite Aid said in a statement Tuesday. Chief Operating Officer Kermit Crawford is also leaving immediately, as are Chief Financial Officer Darren Karst and executive Derek Griffith.
The restructuring will include the loss of about 400 jobs. Rite Aid said it will eliminate positions in its "managerial layers" by consolidating roles, affecting more than 20 percent of its corporate positions.
"Rite Aid's board of directors is committed to more closely aligning the structure and leadership of the company with our present scale and today's announcement is an important step in positioning Rite Aid for future success," said board chairman Bruce Bodaken.
"These are difficult decisions and we recognize the implications they have for individuals across our organization. However, it is imperative we take action."
The announcement is the largest company shake-up since two mergers fell apart over the past two years. A proposed merger with Walgreens in 2017 ended under competition concerns raised by the Federal Trade Commission.
Another attempted merger with grocery chain Albertsons last year ended after two prominent proxy advisers told shareholders to vote against it.
Rite Aid said that it expects to save approximately $55 million annually with the reductions.