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Shares of natural grocer The Fresh Market (UNKNOWN:TFM.DL) dropped more than 10% early Tuesday after the company announced the surprise resignation of its CEO.
Why it's happening
In a press release Monday evening, The Fresh Market stated CEO Craig Carlock has both left the company and resigned as a member of its board. The Fresh Market has hired a national executive search firm to help find a permanent replacement, and in the meantime has appointed Chief Operating Officer Sean Crane to serve as interim CEO. Crane, for his part, has 14 years of senior management experience with the company, and notably also served as interim CFO from December 2012 to June 2013.
The reasons for Carlock's departure remain unclear, which means it's too early to draw any definite conclusions from an investor's perspective. But The Fresh Market founder and board Chairman Ray Berry did state, "The Board and I would like to thank Craig for his many years of service and significant contributions to The Fresh Market." Berry went on to insist the grocery chain is "well positioned, both culturally and financially, for future success."
The Fresh Market also reaffirmed its fiscal 2014 guidance provided in November, calling for comparable-store sales growth of 2.5% to 3.5%, and adjusted earnings per share of $1.56 to $1.64. It did note, however, generally accepted accounting principles earnings will now be negatively affected by roughly $0.03 per diluted share in costs related to the leadership changes, resulting in a new expected GAAP per share earnings range of $1.36 to $1.44.