Kevin Holt, CEO of Ahold Delhaize USA, will step down from the Ahold Delhaize Management Board when his tenure ends at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of shareholders on April 12, 2023, according to a statement released by Ahold Delhaize today. At the AGM, Ahold Delhaize will propose JJ Fleeman for election as CEO of Ahold Delhaize USA and a member of the Ahold Delhaize Management Board. JJ’s appointment to the Ahold Delhaize Management Board is contingent upon shareholder ratification at the AGM. To facilitate a smooth transition following the AGM, Kevin will stay on with Ahold Delhaize USA in an advising role until his retirement at the end of 2023.
Since May 2018, J has held the positions of President of Peapod Digital Labs and Chief Commercial and Digital Officer of Ahold Delhaize USA. JJ is in charge of empowering Ahold Delhaize USA’s regional brands to provide an unrivalled omnichannel grocery experience through Peapod Digital Labs, a centre of excellence that advances digital and e-commerce innovation, technology, and experience to suit the evolving needs of customers.
“JJ is an inspiring leader who will advance the U.S. businesses through omnichannel market share growth and who will continue to deliver on the Connected Customer strategy that Kevin has so carefully developed and implemented with the team over the past few years,” said Peter Agnefjäll, Chair of the Supervisory Board of Ahold Delhaize. The fact that we were able to choose Kevin’s replacement from within our own ranks is a credit to his leadership.
“Even though Kevin will be with us for another year and we will formally say farewell next year, I want to take this chance to thank him for his great leadership and service to the Ahold Delhaize Management Board and the companies of Ahold Delhaize USA, including its predecessor firms. Our U.S. companies have performed very well under Kevin’s leadership, and he has always led with customers and employees in mind, according to Frans Muller, President and CEO of Ahold Delhaize.
Kevin said, “Some of the best years of my retail career were spent working for Ahold Delhaize USA enterprises. I’m quite proud of the way our employees have worked to keep our brands locally relevant and provide omnichannel customer service. I’m excited to watch JJ lead our enterprises as they grow in the future.
JJ has worked primarily in the grocery retail industry for Ahold Delhaize companies over the course of his 30-year career, including Food Lion, the largest brand in the United States. He has held a variety of executive leadership positions in the areas of strategy, commercial, digital, retail operations, marketing, and merchandising. JJ will continue to work out of Salisbury, North Carolina, and also travel to other American offices.
JJ continued, “I’m tremendously grateful for this chance to lead Ahold Delhaize USA and work with our employees who are enthusiastic about serving their customers and communities every single day. The local brands in each of these companies’ operating markets maintain dominant market positions due to the strength of the U.S. enterprises. Every day, we proudly contribute to the communities we serve by giving millions of customers access to cheap, wholesome food that is also sustainable.
Frans continued, “My colleagues on the Executive Committee and I are eager to welcome JJ to our leadership team and work with him to provide value to customers every day. We will keep expanding our solid international portfolio, which includes our U.S. businesses. We are fortunate that, as we get ready for this leadership transition, we can collaborate with both Kevin and JJ over the coming months.