Whole Foods shakes up board as key sales figure falls again

This report includes material from Bloomberg News.

In the last three months, Whole Foods' share price surged almost 19% to $36 a share, thanks to the huge changes in Directors and the Jana Partners stake.

"We have the right plan - and the right team - to execute on our initiatives at an aggressive pace", Mackey said in a statement Wednesday.

Whole Foods wants Jana Partners, Neuberg Berman and the rest of its shareholders to know it takes their calls for improved performance seriously. Sulzberger noted that the new board now has four women and nine former CEOs or CFOs.

In response, Whole Foods announced it is bringing in five new board members and a new chief financial officer to carve out a vision forward. Also, CFO Glenda J. Flanagan sold 4,250 shares of the business's stock in a transaction on Thursday, February 23rd. Finally, Equity Investment Corp Acquisition Inc boosted its stake in shares of Whole Foods Market by 1.6% in the first quarter.

Shares of Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFM) traded up 2.15% during mid-day trading on Thursday, reaching $37.03. It also sees 2017 revenues rise 1% or more, which implies sales around $15.97 billion, also in-line with analysts' view for $15.93 billion. Nonetheless, from here on out, earnings per share forecasts for the current quarter are $0.37. Revenue will climb 1 percent or more, compared with an earlier goal of 1.5 percent. Aldi has 1,600 US locations and to expand to 2,000 stores by the end of next year. Whole Foods also is cutting $300 million in additional costs by fiscal 2020.

"We understand that we need to do much more, and faster", said Mackey.

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On Wednesday, Whole Foods said it expects its various initiatives including the rollout of a loyalty program to help sales at established locations turn positive by the end of its fiscal 2018. The grocery chain asked the shareholder to accept a two-year standstill request in exchange for putting some of its proposed candidates on the board, but that deal was rejected. Jana opted to keep all its options open pending further changes at the company, the spokesman said.

Whole Foods also announced the appointment of five new independent directors to its board of directors. That's when the company ended the co-CEO structure it once held, naming co-founder John Mackey as the company's sole chief executive.

While those changes are substantial, it's too soon to tell if they will appease activist shareholder Jana, which acquired 9% of the stock last month and is its second-biggest shareholder.

Whole Foods is struggling as competition in the organic and natural foods retail space intensifies. The reported Whole Foods board shakeup could be a preemptive move to fight Jana Partners. The company has a consensus rating of "Hold" and a consensus target price of $32.74.

On 11/4/2015 Whole Foods Market announced a quarterly dividend of $0.14 1.79% with an ex dividend date of 1/13/2016 which will be payable on 1/26/2016.

ILLEGAL ACTIVITY WARNING: "Henderson Group PLC Raises Position in Whole Foods Market, Inc".

Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. raised its stake in Whole Foods Market, Inc. Looking at this figure it suggests that the shares of Whole Foods Market, Inc. The firm's quarterly revenue was down 99.9% compared to the same quarter previous year. His appointment comes several months after the grocer had said that Glenda Flanagan, the current chief financial officer, meant to retire.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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