ATLANTA — Two executives at the Coca-Cola Co. plan to retire in 2020. Francisco Crespo, chief growth officer, will step down after a 30-year career with the company. Bernhard Goepelt, senior vice-president and general counsel, has announced his intent to retire after eight years in his role.
Mr. Crespo was named to the newly created position of chief growth officer in 2017 and oversaw integrated global marketing, corporate strategy and customer and commercial operations.
Following his departure, three senior leaders will assume the responsibilities. Manolo Arroyo will become chief marketing officer while continuing in his role of president of the company’s Asia Pacific group and will lead the integrated global marketing teams, which include creative, category, marketing operations, design and knowledge and insights. John Murphy, chief financial officer, will oversee corporate strategy. Customer and commercial operations will report to Brian Smith, president and chief operating officer.
The structural changes will take effect Jan. 1, 2020, and marks the return of a global chief marketing officer position after the company eliminated the role two years ago.
“Francisco has played a critical role in the success of our company in recent years, especially in helping develop a growth strategy that has become thoroughly embedded in our operations and our culture,” said James Quincey, chairman and chief executive officer of the Coca-Cola Co. “We know consumer needs are changing faster and faster, and it is critical for the company to be agile in how it responds and adapts.”
Mr. Crespo, who joined Coca-Cola in 1989, will remain with the company through June 30, 2020, as a senior strategic adviser. During his tenure, he managed operations in South American markets and became president of the company’s Mexico business unit before assuming his current role.
“Over the past several years, we’ve worked hard to create headroom for our brands to grow,” Mr. Crespo said. “We created the frameworks and disciplines to capture it, and our results demonstrate our progress. I feel confident that this great company that I love is set for sustained and long-term growth.”
Mr. Goepelt joined Coca-Cola in 1992 as legal counsel for the former German division and advanced to a series of larger roles throughout Europe, the Middle East and Asia. In 2010, he relocated to Atlanta and was named associate general counsel of global marketing, commercial leadership and strategy. He was named to his current position in 2011. He plans to remain with the company through February. The company said it will name a successor at a later date.
Mr. Arroyo joined the company in 1995 and has amassed experience in operations, marketing and brand management. He was named to his current position in Asia Pacific in early 2019.
“Manolo’s dual leadership over operations and marketing is a new structure for us, and we anticipate that it will evolve in the months ahead,” Mr. Quincey said. “Manolo’s focus will range from developing work that can be used around the globe to supporting local campaigns.”