Kraft names new executives

City A.M. Reporter
KRAFT Foods has named its current chief executive, Irene Rosenfeld, to lead its snacks business and Anthony Vernon to lead its North American grocery business, when the giant packaged food company splits in two.

Vernon is currently president of Kraft Foods North America.

The maker of Cadbury chocolate and Oscar Mayer lunch meat said it still expects to complete the split-up by the end of 2012.

Rosenfeld, 58, has been chief executive of Kraft since 2006 and is credited with integrating Nabisco, leading Kraft through its spin-off from Altria and acquiring Lu biscuits and the Cadbury brand. She was widely expected to lead the snack business.

Kraft also said John Cahill, currently a partner at Ripplewood Holdings, would join the company and become non-executive chairman of the North American grocery company.

Cahill has held senior finance positions with PepsiCo and Yum Brands’ KFC and was chairman and chief executive of Pepsi Bottling Group, the bottling business spun off from Pepsi in 1999.

Rosenfeld surprised the market in August by announcing the split of the businesses.

The move is designed to give investors the chance to bet on a snacks business that is growing fast in emerging markets, or opt for the stable dividends offered by a slower-growing general grocery business.