LOUISVILLE, KY, January 7, 2014 - Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE:YUM) today announced it has appointed David Gibbs, 50, as President of its Pizza Hut business in the U.S., and Jason Marker, 43, as General Manager of its KFC business in the U.S. Gibbs will report to Scott Bergren, Pizza Hut Chief Executive Officer; and Marker will report to Micky Pant, KFC Chief Executive Officer. Both appointments are effective immediately.
In November 2013, Yum! Brands, Inc. announced it would reorganize its business to drive greater brand and geographic focus. Effective January 1, 2014, the reorganization became effective and the Company combined its Yum! Restaurants International (YRI) and the U.S. individual divisions for KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell. Yum! Restaurants China and Yum! Restaurants India remain separate divisions given their strategic importance and enormous growth potential.
At the time of the reorganization announcement, David C. Novak, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Yum! Brands, Inc., said, "We believe that having 100% focused brand teams will enable us to more aggressively accelerate growth. The next logical step was to organize our division leadership and resources by Brand, as we are now doing," he added.
David Gibbs joined the Company in 1989 and has risen through senior management since that time. He began his career in development and his roles included Vice President of Development at KFC and at YUM. In 2006, he was promoted to Chief Financial Officer of Pizza Hut in the U.S., then to CFO at Yum! Restaurants International, and most recently served as President and CFO of YRI. During that time, Gibbs improved the business model at Pizza Hut and led the development of a new vibrant restaurant asset base and significant supply chain savings. "David Gibbs is a champion for growth," said Scott Bergren, Pizza Hut Chief Executive Officer. "He is an outstanding business leader, with strong strategic and brand building skills, and a demonstrated ability to work effectively with franchisees, share best practices, and build people capability." Gibbs steps into the role vacated by Bergren, who was promoted to global brand leader for Pizza Hut during the recent reorganization.
Jason Marker joined the Company from Unilever over 10 years ago as a marketer in the South Pacific region, based in Australia. He then was promoted to the Chief Marketing Officer and was a key force in developing product and marketing ideas that were first successful in Australia and then exported across KFC’s global system. Marker was relocated to Yum! Restaurants International as the Vice President of Global Branding and Marketing. He most recently has served as Chief Marketing Officer of KFC U.S. "Jason Marker is the ideal candidate to lead the KFC business in the U.S.," said Micky Pant, KFC Chief Executive Officer. "He has excellent commercial skills, with a deep understanding of consumer insights and concept development. He is also detail-oriented and works effectively with franchisees and has demonstrated leadership skills cross-functionally." Marker replaces John Cywinski, who has served as KFC U.S. President for the past three years and has made the personal decision to resign from the Company to pursue other opportunities.
"I want to thank John Cywinski for his leadership and wish him every continued success with his new ventures. As we move forward, I couldn’t be more confident that the best is yet to come—for our customers, our associates and our franchisees—as we leverage our brand portfolio to grow our business around the world. I am pleased that David Gibbs and Jason Marker, two seasoned executives who have risen through our system, will establish a seamless transition to grow our U.S. Pizza Hut and KFC businesses, respectively," Novak added.
Yum! Brands, Inc., based in Louisville, Kentucky, has over 40,000 restaurants in more than 130 countries and territories. Yum! Brands is ranked #201 on the Fortune 500 List with revenues of over $13 billion in 2012 and in 2013 was named among the top 100 Corporate Citizens by Corporate Responsibility Magazine. The Company's restaurant brands - KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell - are the global leaders of the chicken, pizza and Mexican-style food categories. Outside the United States, the Yum! Brands system opened on average over five new restaurants per day in 2012, making it a leader in international retail development.
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