Arthur T. offers to return to work at Market Basket
Ousted Market Basket CEO Arthur T. Demoulas has offered to return to work today while he continues to negotiate a deal to buy the company, but the board has so far skirted his proposal.
Spokeswoman Justine Griffin of Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications released the statement on Arthur T.’s behalf last night. She said he hopes to “work to bring back his full team to stabilize and begin to restore the business.”
“These steps are critical at this point and are in the best interests of Associates, customers, vendors and shareholders,” the statement read. “Time is of the essence. Arthur T. is hopeful but resolution depends on the response of the other shareholders in order for an agreement to be reached.”
A family feud boiled over June 23 when the Market Basket board of directors fired the beloved CEO. Grocery buyers, truck drivers and other employees at the corporate headquarters in Tewksbury, Mass., have refused to work since July 21. As deliveries don’t show and shelves sit empty, employees at the chain’s 71 stores across New England have been protesting and calling for Arthur T.’s return.
Arthur T. offered last week to buy the 50.5 percent of the chain that is controlled by his cousin Arthur S. Demoulas and his allies among the family. New co-CEOs Felicia Thornton and Jim Gooch have threatened to fire any employees who don’t show up for work today, and the company has scheduled three days of job fairs this week to fill any empty positions.
Arthur T. had offered to return as of midnight last night. But the Market Basket board responded about 11:30 p.m. with a statement of its own, which was reported by the Boston Globe.
According to the Globe, the statement encouraged other shareholders, including Arthur T., to continue providing “constructive proposals” for the company.
“The board fully supports the current management team in their efforts to ensure that Market Basket’s normal business operations resume immediately for the benefit of its customers, associates, vendors and communities,” the statement read.
(Megan Doyle can be reached at 369-3321 or firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @megan_e_doyle.)