Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) has confirmed published reports that Chief Information Officer Hsiao Wang has left the company.
Bloomberg News reported Monday that, in an internal memo, Interim WBA CEO Ginger Graham indicated that Wang, on a leave of absence, was no longer with the company. Wang had joined Deerfield, Illinois-based WBA—parent of U.S. drug store giant Walgreens—in late September 2022 as CIO after holding the same post at arts and crafts retailer Michael’s.
The memo said WBA has tapped Neal Sample, the former CIO of Northwestern Mutual, to serve as a technology consultant to Graham, according to Bloomberg. Sample has previously served as CIO and chief operating officer at pharmacy benefit manager Express Scripts, now part of health insurer Cigna, Bloomberg noted.
A WBA spokesman reached by Winsight Grocery Business declined further comment on Wang’s departure.
When announcing Wang’s hiring, WBA said he would focus on boosting the company’s technology platform to further strategic priorities, namely the digital experience for customers and patients and healthcare solutions for Walgreens and Walgreens Health. Wang, who succeeded Francesco Tinto, joined WBA after serving as executive vice president and CIO at The Michaels Co. Before that, he spent 16 years at Walmart in an array of tech and IT leadership roles, culminating in his role as senior VP and chief technology officer for Sam’s Club, where WBA said he established artificial intelligence, robotics, image and speech recognition, and mobile capabilities.
On Friday, Bloomberg also reported, citing anonymous sources, that WBA is mulling former Express Scripts CEO Tim Wentworth as a candidate to replace departed WBA CEO Rosalind Brewer, who stepped down as chief executive and from the board on Aug. 31. Graham, lead independent director at WBA, was appointed interim CEO. WBA said Brewer—who succeeded Stefano Pessina and had been president and COO of Starbucks and president and CEO of Sam’s Club—would serve an adviser during the search for a permanent CEO.
Wentworth reportedly led the $53 billion merger of Cigna and Express Scripts in 2018 and, after the deal, was named as CEO of Cigna’s Evernorth health services unit. He retired from Cigna in February 2022.
WBA had already seen a C-suite departure over the summer. In late July, James Kehoe, global chief financial officer, left the company to become CFO at financial services technology firm FIS. Manmohan Mahajan, senior vice president and global controller, was appointed as interim global CFO while WBA seeks a full-time replacement.