In advance of its 2012 spin-off,Kraft Foods' board of directors identified the chairmen and chief executive officers for its future global snacks and North American grocery companies. As previously announced, the company expects to complete the spin-off by the end of 2012.
When the new companies launch:
Irene B. Rosenfeld, 58, Kraft's current chairman and CEO, will be chairman and CEO of the global snacks company, with $31 billion in estimated revenue and a significant presence in numerous fast-growing, international markets.
W. Anthony (Tony) Vernon, 55, currently executive vice president and president, Kraft Foods North America, will become chief executive officer of the $17 billion North American grocery company.
Kraft saidJohn T. Cahill,54, currently an industrial partner of private equity firmRipplewood Holdings LLC, will become non-executive chairman of the North American grocery company. Initially, he will serve as executive chairman, reflecting the tremendous effort required to launch and transition to a public company. Cahill will join Kraft Foods in January to begin work on the separation.
"Irene, John and Tony are three of the finest executives in business today," said Mark Ketchum, lead director for Kraft's board of directors. "Their commitment to shareholder value, passion for brands and focus on sound financial management give the board great confidence in the future of the snacks and grocery companies."
Vernon joined Kraft in 2009 as president of its North American business. He previously worked for more than 20 years with Johnson & Johnson. There, he ran several multi-billion dollar businesses and built many of J&J's largest consumer brands, including Tylenol, Motrin and Pepcid, said Kraft.
"I'm delighted that Tony will become CEO of the grocery company," said Rosenfeld. "His focus on marketing innovation, new products and on disciplined cost control has set our North American business on a new trajectory, and I have great confidence in the future."
Cahill previously served in senior finance positions with PepsiCo and KFC. Kraft noted that Cahill also served as chairman and CEO of The Pepsi Bottling Group, Inc., a "highly successful" beverage business that separated from PepsiCo in 1999. In addition to his role at Ripplewood Holdings, Cahill serves on the boards of Colgate-Palmolive and Legg Mason.