The board of directors of Demoulas Super Markets on Friday confirmed it was in receipt of an offer to buy the company from deposed president Arthur T. Demoulas but failed to act to reinstate him in an executive position, calling for “normal business operations to resume immediately.”
The board met Friday in Boston while a rally took place near the company’s Tewksbury, Mass., headquarters. Workers demanding the reinstatement of Arthur T. Demoulas, who was fired as president in June, have staged demonstrations and calls for a boycott for more than week, crippling store operations for the company, operator of 71 Market Basket stores in New England.
“The Board acknowledges that it has heard from many stakeholders. The negative behavior of certain current and former associates is at variance with the company’s culture of putting the needs of the Market Basket customers first. It is now clear that it is in the interests of all members of the Market Basket community for normal business operations to resume immediately,” it said in a prepared statement.
Following the meeting the board issued a statement, saying the past month had been “trying,” noting the directors “appreciate the strain th[e] change of leadership has placed on our associates.” The board said it would welcome back associates committed to Market Basket customers, “[with] no penalty or discipline for any associate who joins in … a significant effort to return to the unparalleled level of performance and customer service that have been hallmarks of the Market Basket brand.” The board also said there would no change of the company’s compensation and benefits package.
“Furthermore, the Board reaffirmed its election of Co-CEOs Felicia Thornton and James Gooch to manage the company in accordance with the company’s bylaws.”
The board said the offer to buy the company from Arthur T. Demoulas and the “Class B” shareholders met its deadline for a proposal. “Consistent with its fiduciary obligations, the board will evaluate and seriously consider this proposal, along with any other offers previously received and to be received. Following its evaluation of all of the offers, it will convey its recommendations to the company’s shareholders,” the statement said.
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