Kellogg appoints Gary Pilnick CEO of new North America cereals business

USA— Kellogg has unveiled the executive picks to lead its soon-to-be spun-off North America cereals business— as part of its upcoming split into three standalone companies— with 22-year company veteran Gary Pilnick heading the pack.

The cereal business, now referred to as North America Cereal Co., will house brands including Special K, Frosted Flakes and Froot Loops, and will supply the US, Canada and the Caribbean.

Pilnick’s team will also comprise Sherry Brice-Williamson as chief supply chain officer and Doug VanDeVelde as CGO. Bruce Brown will serve as chief customer officer and Shannon Bible will fill the chief transformation officer role.

The appointments will be effective upon the separation of North America Cereal Co., which Kellogg said is on track to be completed by the end of 2023.

Kellogg announced the restructuring in June, with North America Cereal Co. one of three reincarnations along with the Global Snacking Co. and Plant Co.

Kellogg said the split would “enhance performance and value”. However, the company indicated it may choose to dispose of the plant-based business, which houses the Morningstar Farms brand, following the split.

The remarkable story of Kellogg Company began with cereal, and through more than a century of operational success, we have the privilege of taking what has grown into a US$2.4bn business on its next journey as North America Cereal Co.

Gary Pilnick, designated CEO, North America Cereal Co. Tweet

The plant-based arm and the North American cereals businesses represented a combined 20% of Kellogg’s group sales in 2021.

Pilnick said: “The remarkable story of Kellogg Company began with cereal, and through more than a century of operational success, we have the privilege of taking what has grown into a US$2.4bn business on its next journey as North America Cereal Co.”

Steve Cahillane, Kellogg’s chairman and CEO, is set to take on the same roles at the new Global Snacking Co. Announcing the appointments at the North American cereal entity said Pilnick’s inspiring leadership style, deep knowledge of the business and central role in defining the company’s successful strategy, make him the natural choice to lead North America Cereal Co.

Pilnick is vice chairman for corporate development and Kellogg’s chief legal officer and was a key “architect” of the Deploy for Growth Strategy launched in 2018 to improve sales.

Kellogg has said it believes its cereal business, which amassed roughly $2.4 billion in net sales in 2021, will see growth as an individual company. In its most recent quarterly earnings call, Kellogg said its cereal operations are recovering at a quicker pace than it anticipated from a 2021 strike and factory fire, with organic net cereal sales up 8% over the previous quarter.

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