Whole Foods to drop 1 of 2 co-CEOs as sales fall again

Markets Associated Press

Whole Foods, which has been run by two CEOs for six years, says it is dropping one of them as it also reports that sales fell for the fifth straight quarter.

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Co-founder John Mackey will become the sole CEO at the end of the year. The other co-CEO, Walter Robb, will remain on the company's board and be a senior adviser to the company.

The natural foods grocer says sales fell 2.6 percent at established stores in the fourth quarter, worse than the 2 percent drop analysts expected, according to FactSet.

Whole Foods has been hurt by increasing competition as supermarkets and even big-box retailers have been selling organic foods and products.

Shares of Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods Market Inc. rose more than 4 percent after the market close Wednesday.