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Supervalu realigns management in turnaround bid

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Grocery store chain Supervalu is restructuring its management ranks under its new CEO as it engineers a turnaround in the face of tough competition and a sputtering economy.

The operator of Albertson's, Jewel-Osco and other grocery chains said Kevin Holt, 53, was named president of Supervalu retail, working on strategy for the company's traditional retail and pharmacy divisions. He joined the company in May as executive vice president of retail operations.

Janel Haugarth, 56, a 35-year veteran at Supervalu, will become executive vice president, business optimization and process improvement, a newly created position. She had been executive vice president, merchandising and logistics.

As traditional supermarkets face increasing competition from big-box retailers and drug stores, Supervalu has tried to put a heavier emphasis on attracting shoppers with lower prices, but the efforts have failed to gain traction so far.

Late last month, the Eden Prairie, Minn.-based chain fired its CEO just weeks after reporting a dismal fiscal first quarter and gave the title to chairman Wayne Sales. The company also suspended its dividend and announced plans to review its business, suggesting it could put itself up for sale.

Its shares fell 2 cents to $2.38 in afternoon trading. They are down 71 percent since the beginning of the year.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.