Peter Engel (pictured), who has served as president of Fred Meyer Jewelers for more than 15 years, will step down from the position on March 31, the company confirmed to JCK.
Carolyn Dabbundo, vice president of East Coast sales, and Kirsten Darrow, general vice president of marketing and merchandising, are also leaving the company in February, it said.
The Fred Meyer Jewelers team will now report to Todd Kammeyer, vice president of merchandising for the Fred Meyer grocery chain.
The jeweler’s team will be led by Jon Cook, vice president of operations, and Julie Keeney, vice president of sales, the company told JCK.
Beverly McCormick Rains, vice president of West Coast sales, will now oversee all regional sales directors as well as the training department, the company said.
According to the company statement, “Fred Meyer Jewelers will continue to be a leading jewelry retailer with over 150 stores, e-commerce, and an important part of [owner] Kroger Co.”
It said that Kroger “continuously review[s] our asset portfolio to prioritize investments in our business,” and the changes came about because of that review.
Last year, the jewelry chain closed 71 stores. According to Kroger, at the end of the third quarter of 2020, the jewelry chain comprised 170 stores, a number that has held steady for the last three quarters. Just three years prior, at the end of the third quarter of 2017, Fred Meyer Jewelers—which includes the Littman Jewelers chain—comprised more than 300 stores.
“We expect the synergy that will come with partnering closer with Fred Meyer leadership will help us be a stronger organization,” Engel said in an internal email. “We have reassessed roles and responsibilities and our current [main office] structure.… Our main office team will look different moving forward.”
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