PepsiCo appoints Jaya Kumar as president, Quaker Foods & Snacks

Beverages and foods giant PepsiCo, Inc has announced the appointment of  its snack division Frito-Lays' chief marketing officer Jaya Kumar as president of its $2-billion breakfast foods unit Quaker Foods & Snacks, which PepsiCo acquired in December 2004 for $13.4 billion in stock.

Kumar will head the century old Quaker's portfolio of brands that include Quaker hot cereals and Chewy granola bars, Cap'n Crunch, Life and Quaker Oatmeal Squares ready-to-eat cereals, Aunt Jemima mixes and syrups, Rice-A-Roni and Near East side dishes, and Quaker's lite snacks. Based in Chicago, he will report to PepsiCo Americas Foods CEO John Compton.

Frito Lay's Ann Mukherjee, who was group VP, marketing, will replace Jaya Kumar as VP and chief marketing officer, reporting to Frito president and CEO Al Carey.

Since joining PepsiCo in 2005, Kumar worked with PepsiCo's Frito-Lay North America unit, where he is credited with having transformed the marketing agenda and key organisational capabilities, driving innovation by integrating customer sales, marketing and R&D.

Under his leadership, the division launched the ground-breaking Crash the Super Bowl consumer promotion for Doritos, which engaged consumers in creating their own television advertisements that aired on the NFL's Super Bowl. One of those consumer-created entries took the top spot on the USA Today Ad Meter earlier this year, and earned the $1 million prize that came with that honour from Frito-Lay.

Prior to joining PepsiCo's Frito-Lay business, Kumar had 18 years of international and domestic brand management and sales experience with a number of consumer goods companies such as at Kraft Foods. He earned a BS from The University of Sciences in Bangalore, India, and received his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, India.

"Jaya brings a powerful combination of innovation, marketing and retail capabilities to his new role at Quaker," said Compton. "As our global mega-brand for health and wellness, Quaker is the jewel of our good-for-you portfolio of food brands. Jaya's passion for growth, coupled with his deep expertise in consumer and shopping insights, is an unbeatable recipe for taking Quaker through its next chapter of growth."