PepsiCo poaches Mars Pet Nutrition CMO Jane Wakely for key marketing role

Wakely worked at Mars for 20 years in various marketing leadership roles.

PepsiCo has hired Jane Wakely as EVP, chief consumer and marketing officer and chief growth officer for international foods.

Wakely, who replaces Jennifer Saenz in her new role, will report to PepsiCo chairman and CEO Ramon Laguarta. She was not immediately available for comment. 

In the new role, Wakely will focus on using customer insights to drive growth. She will also accelerate PepsiCo’s Positive Choices pillar, under the PepsiCo Positive (pep+) corporate strategy, by evolving the product portfolio to include more plant-based, nutritious and sustainable ingredients and products. 

"[Wakely] is a creative and commercially-oriented marketer who is passionate about purpose and innovation as critical growth levers," Laguarta said in a statement. "She has a proven track record of success, and I am confident that with her leadership, we will take our consumer-centricity, innovation, brand and marketing strategies and capabilities, and international foods growth to a new level."

Most recently, Wakely was CMO for Mars Petcare and its Pet Nutrition division. She worked at Mars for 20 years in various marketing leadership roles across the pet care, chocolate and food categories. Prior to Mars Wakely was at Procter & Gamble for eight years as global brand director of cosmetics and European brand manager across its health and beauty portfolio.

Additionally, PepsiCo chief commercial officer Ram Krishnan will add the title of CEO, international beverages. He will also report to Laguarta, and focus on driving growth for PepsiCo across international beverages, as well as its SodaStream Beyond the Bottle brands and its joint venture with Unilever-owned Lipton. 

Last month at PRWeek’s virtual PRDecoded conference, PepsiCo Foods North America CEO Steven Williams discussed how the company has doubled down on purpose during the pandemic.

PepsiCo’s net income for Q3 was $2.22 billion, down from $2.29 billion a year earlier. Net salesrose 11.6% to $20.19 billion, beating expectations of $19.39 billion. The company’s organic revenue, which strips out the impact of acquisitions and divestitures, climbed 9% in Q3.

This story first appeared on PRWeek US.

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