Rite Aid Names Erik Keptner SVP Chief Marketing & Merchandising Officer

Late last week Rite Aid announced that Erik Keptner, a proven leader with more than 20 years’ experience in retail marketing, has been named to the newly created position of senior vice president and chief marketing and merchandising officer, effective June 24, 2019.

In this position, Keptner will be responsible for all aspects of marketing and merchandising. He will report to Bryan Everett, Rite Aid’s chief operating officer.

“Erik is an experienced retail executive who has proven that he can integrate and manage all aspects of an organization’s marketing and merchandising assets to provide great customer experiences, operate efficiently and deliver growth,” said Everett. “We’re excited to welcome Erik to our team as we continue to integrate our marketing and merchandising teams and enhance our omni-channel presence to deliver a seamlessly connected customer experience that drives growth. We will benefit tremendously from his knowledge and expertise as we accelerate these critical efforts.”

Keptner most recently served as senior vice president of marketing for Keasbey, N.J.,-based Wakefern Food Corporation, the nation’s largest retailer-owned cooperative supermarket. In this role, he led digital commerce and analytics, advertising, corporate merchandising, private brands and digital media.

Prior to that, he had a 20-year career with Ahold Delhaize and its Giant Food Stores Division. There, he served in various roles of increasing responsibility including executive vice president of marketing and senior vice president of sales, marketing and merchandising. While in these roles, Keptner led efforts to enhance the company’s loyalty program, accelerate digital marketing and e-commerce, evolve store formats and merchandising programs, and create a culture focused on making consumer-centric data-driven decisions.

Keptner holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Policy from Penn State University and an MBA from Temple University.

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Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.