Wal-Mart Stores Chief Operating Officer Judith McKenna was named the president and chief executive of its international unit. The announcement made on Wednesday will be effective on February 1.
Most sees the role as a stepping stone towards the top job at the world’s largest retailer. This is due to current CEO Doug McMillon and his predecessor Mike Duke having previously run the international unit.
“I’ve had the pleasure to work with Judith for many years and have seen first-hand her ability to lead strategic change, build relationships with our associates and strengthen our business. Her integrity, high expectations, and passion for the business and our associates will ensure our continued success in International,” stated McMillon.
McKenna started working at Walmart in 1996 at Asda, which is the company’s U.K. operation. She initially served as the chief operating officer and CFO. McKenna also worked as the executive vice president of strategy and international development for Walmart International.
David Cheesewright, Walmart’s current International CEO, will stay with the company on a limited basis. He will also be working on unspecified company projects.
For the last reported quarter, Wal-Mart’s international business reported net sales amounting to $29.55 billion. It makes up almost a quarter of the company’s net sales.
Walmart Partners with Start-up Southern Pines
Walmart also announced its agreement with Southern Pines on Wednesday. The deal was made to help distribute the start-up’s disposal product, a powder called DisposeRX, free of charge.
Walmart’s pharmacy customers will be receiving the powder. It is meant to be used by customers who no longer need their prescription painkillers and has to dispose of it.
The recent agreement was made in hopes of helping curb the widespread opioid crisis.
“In an effort to help curb abuse and misuse, Walmart is launching a first-of-its-kind opioid disposal solution – available at no cost – in all company pharmacies,” Walmart announced. “DisposeRx provides a virtually effortless way for patients to destroy leftover opioids and a way to do so without ever leaving home.”
When mixed with warm water and prescription medication in a pill bottle, DisposeRX creates a solid that can be safely thrown into the trash. It does not pose risks of contaminating groundwater, according to its maker.
DisposeRX’s CEO John Holaday also noted that repeated tests failed to extract opioids from the resultant solid.
Walmart then said that a small packet of DisposeRX will now be given free automatically to any pharmacy customers filling new Class II opioid prescriptions at all of the retailer’s 4,700 pharmacies.
Information regarding the financial terms of the agreement was not disclosed.
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