Dick Boer stepping down July 1
ZAANDAM, Netherlands — Ahold Delhaize announced on Thursday that Dick Boer will be stepping down as chief executive officer as of July 1 and will retire from the company. Frans Muller has been appointed as the new CEO, effective July 1.
“We thank Dick for his leadership and dedication throughout his 20-year career at Ahold Delhaize and Ahold. Dick’s accomplishments include the successful repositioning of Albert Heijn to market leadership, strategically building Ahold’s portfolio into brands with No. 1 and No. 2 positions in the markets they serve, and introducing digital, e-commerce and sustainability as integrated parts of the business,” Mats Jansson, chairman of the supervisory board, said in a statement.
“Dick has role-modelled the values of our Better Together strategy, with his passion for retail, customers, associates and health. Under Dick’s leadership, two leading food retailers were brought together in an historic merger. With this merger now being substantially completed, Ahold Delhaize is ready to move into its next phase.”
Jansson continued: “Together with Dick, Frans was instrumental in bringing together Ahold and Delhaize Group. During the past two years he has been driving the integration process in close collaboration with our great local brands and support offices. Frans brings a wealth of retail experience and a deep knowledge of our company, brands, and U.S. and European markets, making him the natural choice as next CEO. Frans is committed to the brand-centric operating model which is key to our strategy and has the customer at its core. We are confident that Frans is the right person to lead the company into its next phase.“
Muller has more than 20 years of experience in retail and has served as deputy CEO and chief integration officer of Ahold Delhaize since July 2016. He also led Delhaize America on an interim basis from October 2016 until January 2018. Prior to the merger between Ahold and Delhaize, Muller served as president and CEO of Delhaize Group since 2013. Before joining Delhaize Group, he served on the management board of German retailer Metro AG for seven years and was CEO of Metro Cash & Carry for five years.
“I’m honored to be given the opportunity to lead this company with such powerful brands, incredible talent and long-term growth potential — a combination that sets us apart globally,” said Muller. “Our success will be based upon delivering a great and seamless shopping experience for our customers, both in stores and online. Building on the solid foundations established under Dick’s leadership, we will continue to drive innovation and growth in stores and online as we execute our strategy and create value for all our stakeholders. My focus will be on delivering our promises to be a better place to shop, better place to work and better neighbor — every day,” he added.
Boer added: “It has been a privilege to lead Ahold Delhaize and to work with so many talented colleagues, serving customers around the globe. Today, our company is well positioned for long-term growth, creating a natural moment for me to step down. I am proud of what we achieved together, and it is my absolute pleasure to be handing the helm to Frans, who I have come to know as a talented leader. I wish him, the executive team and everyone at the company all the best for the future.”
Boer will work closely with Muller to ensure a smooth transition, and he will remain available as advisor to the company until mid-2019.
Separately, the company announced that Jan Hommen has been appointed chairman of the supervisory board, succeeding Mats Jansson, who will retire from the board after the company’s annual general meeting on April 11. The board has appointed Bill McEwan as vice chairman, succeeding Hommen.
Hommen has been vice chairman of the supervisory board since July 2016. Prior to the merger, Hommen served as chairman of Ahold’s supervisory board since 2013.