A summer-long non-union strike came to a joyous end just ahead of Labor Day as hundreds of Market Basket employees returned to work, bolstered by the humbled gratitude of their newly reinstated CEO Arthur T. Demoulas.
Demoulas took the podium at the Market Basket in Chelsea Monday morning, where he shed light on what was going through his mind as his loyal employees picketed on his behalf.
“It was very heartfelt and it was also very nerve racking to see all these people put their livelihoods on the line… in the way in which they did,” said Demoulas. “It touched my heart and I will be forever grateful.”
Demoulas was ousted as the company’s CEO earlier this summer, prompting the company-wide unrest. On Wednesday, Demoulas and his siblings struck a $1.5 billion deal to take over the company.
The first order of business, Demoulas said, is to “take care of business.”
“We plan to be efficient and productive of an organization as ever…We fully intend to keep prices as competitive as can be. We stand behind the ‘More for your Dollar’ slogan that we’ve lived by for the past many, many decades,” said Demoulas.
The CEO is known for fostering a sense of camaraderie among his employees, earning their trust and loyalty. When asked on Monday how he manages to be such a revered figure in a company of 25,000 employees, Demoulas pointed to the company’s team-centered philosophy.
“This organization has a hands on management team. Everyone is equal and we work together and we stay in touch with one another the best we can,” said Demoulas. “We try to be good to each other and help each other. Everything that these hard working associates did and all of these customers that backed them up their level of loyalty was unprecedented and I’ll be forever grateful.”
Demoulas said he hoped to get three out of five new stores opened by the end of the year. A Revere store will be the first to open.
Watch Demoulas’ full media Q&A online at www.mydemoulas.net.