Inside This Issue - News
Navarro names Ortiz chief executive
July 18th, 2011
MIAMI – Juan Ortiz has been named chief executive officer of Navarro Discount Pharmacy. He had been chief financial officer.
The 46-year-old Ortiz succeeds Steve Kaczynski, who resigned to pursue other business interests. Kaczynski will remain a consultant to the 29-unit, Hispanic-owned drug chain through the end of the year.
“Juan Ortiz and his team have worked diligently on Navarro’s successful financial turnaround, building a singular focus and working hand in hand with management and employees to execute an effective, long-term plan,” says Jorge Rico, a cofounding partner of MBF Healthcare Partners, which bought a majority stake in the chain in 2007. “In addition, Juan’s leadership over the last three years laid the needed groundwork for the first phase of Navarro’s three-year store expansion plan, now being implemented, as well as record sales and earnings in the company’s 50-year history.”
Ortiz says that with its first new store in five years, new e-commerce capabilities and the imminent launch of the Vida Mia private label line, Navarro is “back on the growth track.” As to the retailer’s plans to add 21 stores by February 2014, he says, “The appetite certainly is there from the ownership group and the management team.”
Ortiz joined Navarro as CFO in August 2008, having been recruited because of his ability to manage complex businesses and operations. He had been CEO of Atlantic Dental Inc., a $40 million dental health provider owned by MBF.
At Navarro, Ortiz and his team stabilized sales and customer traffic, identified new revenue streams, boosted profitability and cut operating costs by $10 million in a 24-month period. In recognition of these achievements, Ortiz was named CFO of the Year in the turnaround category by South Florida Business Journal.
Before heading Atlantic Dental, Ortiz was CFO of Bell Microproducts Latin America, a $350 million computer component distribution and services business.
Kaczynski, a former president and CEO of bigg’s, a division of Supervalu Inc., was instrumental in setting a strategic direction for Navarro and expanding its footprint in a year and a half at the helm of the drug chain. Before heading bigg’s he held executive positions at Wild Oats Markets Inc., the Giant Food Stores unit of Ahold USA and Supervalu’s Cub Foods.