Kraft Foods is set to split into two companies next year, with Irene Rosenfeld at the helm of a new $31bn global snacks firm and Anthony (Tony) Vernon to head the $17bn North American grocery company. FoodNavigator-USA looks at the paths they each took to reach the top jobs at Kraft.
Current chairman and CEO of Kraft Foods, Irene Rosenfeld is due to stay on as chairman and CEO of the as-yet-unnamed global snacks company. Meanwhile, Anthony (Tony) Vernon will take the role of CEO at the new Kraft North American Grocery.
Rosenfeld has 29 years’ experience in the food and beverage industry, while Vernon’s experience prior to Kraft included 23 years at Johnson & Johnson, where he led consumer brands including Tylenol, Motrin, Pepcid AC, Imodium and Splenda.
Rosenfeld (58) was chairman and CEO of Frito-Lay from 2004 to 2006 and became CEO of Kraft in 2006, and chairman in March 2007.
Rosenfeld started her career in consumer research at Dancer Fitzgerald Sample advertising agency. She then went on to work at General Foods, which later became part of Kraft Foods, where she worked from 1981 to 2003, including as president of North American Businesses at Kraft Foods North America.
Vernon (55) was a healthcare industry partner at Ripplewood Holdings from 2006 until he joined Kraft in 2009. At Ripplewood, he was an independent director of several consumer, biotech and medical device companies, including Medivation, Uluru, NovoCure, Cord Blood Registry, Disc Dynamics and Zeo Inc.
As for education, Rosenfeld has a PhD in marketing and statistics, a Master of Science in Business, and a B.A. in Psychology from Cornell University. Vernon holds a B.A. in history from Lawrence University and an MBA from the Northwestern University Kellogg Graduate School of Management.
What about pay?
In 2010, Rosenfeld’s salary was $1,503,231 with total compensation of $19,287,983, according to Forbes.
Vernon had total compensation of $3,657,827 – about 19% of Rosenfeld’s total – including a salary of $743,462.
Kraft has also said that John Cahill, a partner at private equity firm Ripplewood Holdings LLC, will become non-executive chairman of the North American grocery company, starting as executive chairman to aid the launch of the new company. Previously, as CEO of PepsiCo Bottling Group, Inc., Cahill provided oversight of its spin-off from PepsiCo in 1999.