Leadership roles emerge as Kraft split nears

by Keith Nunes
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NORTHFIELD, ILL. — As Kraft Foods Inc. nears the time when it will split its business into two entities — a North American grocery business that will carry the Kraft Foods name and a yet-to-be-named global snacks business — management positions are being filled. In a Jan. 9 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Kraft Foods outlined who will fill some of the leadership posts for both companies.

Working with Irene Rosenfeld, who it was announced this past December will lead the global snacks business, will be David Brearton, who is currently the executive vice-president and chief financial officer for Kraft Foods. He will assume a similar role in the snacks business as well as assume the responsibility for information systems.

Mark Clouse will be executive vice-president of North America for the snacks business. He currently is executive vice-president and president of Kraft’s North American snacks and confectionery business unit. Timothy Cofer will remain executive vice-president and president of Europe, and Sanjay Khosla will continue as executive vice-president and president of developing markets. He also has been named chief customer officer for the new company.

Jean Spence will continue as executive vice-president of research, development and quality and will be responsible for all product and packaging development, research, nutrition, quality, food safety and scientific affairs worldwide. Mary Beth West will continue as executive vice-president, chief category and marketing officer and will be responsible for the global category teams for biscuits, chocolate, gum and candy as well as the marketing services functions. She also will assume responsibility for corporate affairs, according to the filing.

The company said a search is currently under way for an executive vice-president of strategy. This person will be responsible for the global snack company’s corporate strategy.

Working with W. Anthony Vernon, who has been tapped to lead the North American Grocery business, is Dino Bianco, who will be executive vice-president and president of the company’s Canadian business; Deanie Elsner, who will be executive vice-president and president of beverages; Marc Firestone will be executive vice-president of corporate and legal affairs and general counsel; and Michael Hsu will be executive vice-president and chief commercial officer, responsible for U.S. sales in food service, Puerto Rico and other export markets.

Timothy McLevish has been named executive vice-president and chief financial officer and will be responsible for the company’s financial operations. He currently holds a similar role for Kraft Foods.
Nicholas Meriggioli has been named executive vice-president and president of Oscar Mayer. He is currently president of the business unit. Michael Osanloo will be executive vice-president and president of grocery. He is currently president of grocery. George Zoghbi will be executive vice-president and president of cheese and dairy, a role he currently fills for the pre-split Kraft.

Sam Rovit will be executive vice-president of strategy, responsible for mergers and acquisitions. He currently fills a similar role for the company.

The company said a search is under way for two other positions, executive vice-president of integrated supply chain and executive vice-president of research and development, quality and innovation.

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