Baking giant is ready for your call

Steve’s breakdown: The makers of Wonder bread (check out the spot from the ’50) just brought on a CMO (a newly created position) and a Chief Operations Information Officer. Smells like a great time for a “Congrats” call.

THOMASVILLE, GA: There will be some new faces sitting in the C-Suites at Flowers Foods (NYSE: FLO).

The Thomasville, Ga.-based baking giant said Wednesday that it created a new position within the company for Debo Mukherjee, naming him chief marketing officer, effective Oct. 2. Flowers said in a news release that Mukherjee will lead the company’s marketing and branding initiatives and “play a key role in product innovation, reflecting the company’s increased brand and consumer focus.”

Mukherjee has 25 years of experience in confection, food and health/nutrition consumer businesses, most recently as founder and owner of Intacta Consulting Group LLC. Prior to launching Intacta, Mukherjee served as the CEO of Redco Foods Inc., a subsidiary of Teekanne GmbH, the largest herbal and flavored tea company in Europe, from 2011 to 2015. He also served in marketing roles for packaged goods companies including Mars Inc., Unilever plc (NYSE: UL), The Kraft Heinz Co. (NASDAQ: KHC), and The Hershey Co. (NYSE: HSY).

Meanwhile, Harish Ramani, a veteran of the beverage industry is taking over as the company’s Senior Vice President and Chief Operations Information Officer. The company’s website did not indicate who previously served in that role. A company spokesperson could not be reached for comment. According to a news release, Ramani will lead Flowers’ information technology operations, with a focus on enhancing key business tools and processes.

Ramani has more than 25 years of IT experience, starting his career as a senior analyst with Exxon/Mobil, before moving into the beverage industry. Romani held various IT leadership positions at Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc. (NYSE: DPS), Cadbury Schweppes plc., and Red Bull North America. He also served as senior vice president and global CIO for Constellation Brands Inc. (NYSE: STZ), which has clients including Corona, Modela, Svedka Imported Vodka and Charles Smith Wines.

Romani most recently worked as global CIO and senior vice president of ARYZTA plc, a Swiss international specialist food company that specializes in baked goods.

Flower Foods is one of America’s largest producers of fresh packaged bakery foods, with brands including Nature’s Own, Wonder and Dave’s Killer Bread. The company announced $3.9 billion in 2016 sales.

In July, the company launched a “voluntary employee separation incentive plan” as part of its effort to restructure, streamline operations and better position the company for profitable growth. In the fourth quarter of 2016, Flowers launched what it calls Project Centennial, an extensive operational review and multiyear plan to improve the company’s performance.

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