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Rite Aid hires CEO as part of restructuring plan

Credit: REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Rite Aid Corp on Monday named Heyward Donigan as chief executive officer, effective immediately, months after the drugstore chain announced its restructuring plan.

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Aug 12 (Reuters) - Rite Aid Corp RAD.N on Monday named Heyward Donigan as chief executive officer, effective immediately, months after the drugstore chain announced its restructuring plan.

The plan, announced in March, includes a change in leadership and a reduction of 400 corporate positions, and is expected to save about $55 million annually and help the company ease the impact of fierce competition that has hurt sales.

Brick-and-mortar drug retailers have been hit as Americans increasingly rely on online retailers such as Amazon.com AMZN.O to buy over-the-counter treatments and as more customers purchase low-cost generic drugs.

Last week, Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc WBA.O said it plans to close about 200 stores in the United States as part of its cost management program aimed at mitigating the pressure related to generic drug prices.

Shares of Rite Aid, which sold more than 1,900 stores to Walgreens in 2018, have fallen 49% so far this year. Rite Aid now has 2,466 stores in 18 states.

Donigan, who most recently served as CEO at Sapphire Digital, a website that analyzes health-care plans, will succeed John Standley, who has led the company since 2010.

(Reporting by Saumya Sibi Joseph in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)

((saumya.joseph@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780, outside U.S. +91 80 6749 2290; Twitter: @SaumyaSibi;))

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