Lori Raya will become the new chief merchandising and marketing officer (CMMO) for SpartanNash, effective Feb. 18.
Raya joins SpartanNash following a 31-year career with Safeway/Albertsons, most recently serving as division president of Albertsons from 2015-18 following her role as division president of Vons in Southern California. In her most recent role, Raya led the post-merger transition with Safeway and integration of multiple banner teams within her division for the second largest grocery store chain in the U.S., with more than 2,200 stores and 250,000 employees.
As SpartanNash’s CMMO, Raya will be responsible for the development and execution of the enterprisewide merchandising and marketing strategy, ensuring alignment with the enterprise’s overall business strategy and providing strategic direction to develop, analyze and implement product assortment, brand positioning, sales planning, pricing, promotion, sourcing, and distribution for independent customers and corporate-owned stores. This oversight includes directing in-depth research and analysis of consumer trends and sales performance and driving innovation to enhance the customer experience in store and online. Raya also will be responsible for increasing sales and market share, improving productivity and profitability and cultivating an engaged, customer-centric workforce.
During Raya’s career with Safeway, she moved through the ranks from a store associate to store manager, district manager, VP of retail operations, group VP of strategic initiatives and multiple food category senior management positions before serving as the first female divisional president in Von’s 107-year history.
Raya assumes the CMMO position from Larry Pierce, who is retiring. Pierce will transition his duties over to Raya and focus on special projects thereafter until his planned retirement in September 2019. Pierce joined the company in 2008 and has served as EVP of merchandising and marketing, since 2014.
Grand Rapids, Michigan-based SpartanNash is a Fortune 400 company whose core businesses include distributing grocery products to independent and chain retailers, its corporate-owned retail stores and U.S. military commissaries and exchanges. It also has produce distribution and fresh food processing businesses. SpartanNash serves customer locations in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, Europe, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Bahrain, Djibouti and Egypt. SpartanNash currently operates 160 supermarkets, primarily under the banners of Family Fare Supermarkets, Martin’s Super Markets, D&W Fresh Market, VG’s Grocery, Dan’s Supermarket and Family Fresh Market. Through its MDV military division, SpartanNash is a leading distributor of grocery products to U.S. military commissaries.