- Mondelēz International named Gustavo Valle as executive vice president and president of its North America operations starting March 1. Valle will lead the company’s $8.3 billion business in the United States and Canada, which includes brands such as Oreo, Triscuit and Ritz.
- Valle has served as executive vice president of Latin America for Mondelēz since joining the company in January 2020. Prior to a two-year stint leading his own consulting service, Valle was employed by Danone for 22 years in various roles around the world.
- The 57-year-old executive will take over for Glen Walter, who is leaving Mondelēz to become CEO of the Tropicana Brands Group. Walter will assume his new role on March 2.
Mondelēz has been in the sweet spot as consumers boost their interest in snacking, a habit that has only intensified during the ongoing pandemic. Now the manufacturer behind popular products like Oreo, belVita and Chips Ahoy! is picking a new executive to oversee its North American operations responsible for nearly 30% of its business.
In selecting Valle for the post, Mondelēz smartly goes with an insider who is not only familiar with the company's portfolio of iconic brands, but also its reach around the globe. While Latin America was only responsible for about 10% of Mondelēz's revenue, it provided Valle with experience that should allow him to seamlessly slide into the top spot overseeing business in the U.S. and Canada. In addition, Valle's time working at French dairy and plant-based food company Danone likely provided him with valuable insight and connections he can tap into while at Mondelēz.
“With more than three decades of experience in consumer packaged goods and a strong track record of success growing brands and categories in the U.S. and beyond, Gustavo is an ideal leader to set our North America business on the path for future success,” Dirk Van de Put, Mondelēz's CEO, said in a statement.
The appointment comes as Glen Walter leaves to head Tropicana Brands, a joint venture between PAI Partners and PepsiCo. The joint venture was formed following PAI’s acquisition of Tropicana, Naked, KeVita, Izze and other juice brands, which closed at the end of January. PepsiCo retained a 39% stake in the business.
Similar to Mondelēz, the newly formed Tropicana Brands is choosing to go with a seasoned CPG veteran. Walter has overseen Mondelēz's North American operations since October 2017. Before that, he worked for 12 years at beverage makers InBev USA (which merged with Anheuser-Busch, announced in 2008) and Coca-Cola.
His time at Coca-Cola, including a stint overseeing the company's North American business, provided him with experience running the region and brands similar to what he will handle at Tropicana. Coca-Cola's brands include Minute Maid and Simply Juices as well as the recently divested Odwalla juices and smoothies.