CVS Health Taps Retail Veteran to Lead Its Pharmacy Business

CVS Health Corp. named former Crate & Barrel Chief Executive Officer Neela Montgomery as president of its CVS Pharmacy unit, tapping new leadership for its drugstore business as online shopping and Covid-19 reshape the industry.

Montgomery will oversee CVS’s roughly 10,000 drugstores in the U.S. at a time when people are buying more convenience items online and the coronavirus pandemic is introducing more patients to ordering prescription medicines the same way.

“She brings deep consumer insights that will allow us to better anticipate consumers’ changing needs and deliver even more value to our customers in local, personalized ways,” Karen Lynch, who will become CVS’s chief executive officer in February, said in a statement.

CVS has been transforming itself into a more diversified health-care company, with plans to remodel more than 2,000 of its stores to offer services like diabetes management. It has been shifting its emphasis as a slew of digital pharmacies, including heavyweights like Amazon.com Inc., try to break into the prescription sales business.

CVS said that during her time at Crate & Barrel, she helped the home-furnishings retailer increase online sales to more 50% of its revenue. Montgomery left Crate & Barrel earlier this year and is currently a board partner at venture-capital firm Greycroft.

Montgomery will oversee stores as they provide coronavirus services like testing at about 4,000 locations. The drugstores are also slated to play a key role in administering Covid-19 vaccines when they become broadly available.

Her new role at CVS is effective Nov. 30. She succeeds Kevin Hourican, who left CVS earlier this year.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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