Blog: Wal-Mart continues to play CEO card close to chest
Michelle Russell | 14 May 2013
US retail giant Wal-Mart has continued to remain tight-lipped over who will succeed current CEO Mike Duke when he steps down.
Two possible internal candidates have been mooted as potential successors: Bill Simon, the head of Wal-Mart's US arm and Doug McMillon, who heads up its international operations.
A spokesperson for the retailer said it would not comment on "rumour or speculation", but that is unlikely to put a stop to the talk over who could succeed Duke.
Neil Stern, a senior partner at US retail consultants MacmillanDoolittle, believes the chances of Wal-Mart hiring externally is "unlikely" given it has always appointed from within for CEO - and particularly given the company is performing "at a fairly strong level".
McMillon and Simon are frequently mentioned as potential successors and are undoubtedly front-runners, according to Stern.
"Both have considerable experience with multiple aspects of the business. Doug is still quite young but has been a rising star for quite some time. Bill has effectively turned around the US, While he doesn't have Wal-Mart experience globally, he is a seasoned global executive. It will be interesting to see which direction they go," he tells just-food.
Whichever direction Wal-Mart chooses to turn, the challenges for Duke's successor are "numerous", Stern believes.
He cites: "Continued US growth and the quest for new format growth ... international growth with particular focus in emerging markets ... the biggest challenge - how to grow e-commerce and multi-channel retail to remain relevant in the future ... and always, the pubic perception of the running the world's largest retailer."
According to a number of reports, Duke isn't expected to step down immediately, but Wal-Mart may name his successor in the coming months.
Nestle, set to welcome a new CEO on 1 January, has announced more changes to the make-up of its senior management team....
Blue Bell Creameries is trying to win back the trust of consumers after a fatal listeriosis outbreak last year was linked to its products - but in recent days the US ice cream maker has issued another...
The UK's competition regulator has given the all-clear to Hain Celestial's bid to buy UK food and beverage group Orchard House Foods, nine months after the US group announced the deal....
Hershey made an unusual announcement today (20 September), sharing its own sales data for the last four weeks to assuage any possible investor concern over figures released by Nielsen....
- Interview: Mondelez eyes sweet success in China
- Interview: Mondelez's outlook for China
- General Mills on Q1, innovation, margins
- How food companies involve staff in sustainability
- What next for Bernard Matthews? - comment
- Ireland unveils national plan to tackle obesity
- Aryzta FY profits fall
- Nestle close to finalising Garoto deal
- ConAgra acquires Frontera Foods' "gourmet" brands
- Aryzta appoints Gary McGann as chairman
- Global Chocolate Confectionery Overview: Challenges, Opportunities and Risks
- The Big 15: Strategies and Priorities of Top Packaged Food Players in Comparison
- Global Foodservice Market 2016-2020
- Constellation Brands, Inc. (STZ) - Financial and Strategic SWOT Analysis Review
- Global Food and Drinks Closures: Performance and Opportunities