PITTSBURGH — Carlos Abrams-Rivera is joining The Kraft Heinz Co. as president of the U.S. zone. Mr. Abrams-Rivera, a former president of the Pepperidge Farm division of Campbell Soup Co., Camden, N.J., most recently was president of Campbell Snacks.
At Kraft Heinz, Mr. Abrams-Rivera will succeed Miguel Patricio, chief executive officer, who has served as interim president of the U.S. zone since stepping into the c.e.o. role last year.
“The U.S. represents the majority of our company’s overall business, so this is an enormously important role,” Mr. Patricio said. “I have every confidence that Carlos is the visionary leader we need to drive the U.S. business forward at this moment of transformation. Carlos has successfully implemented a strategic approach to reinvigorating brands and has a strong track record of growing businesses with a consumer-first focus to consistently drive strong business results.”
The “reinvigorating” of brands that Mr. Patricio referred to includes Mr. Abrams-Rivera tenure as president of Pepperidge. Hired away from Mondelez International in September 2015, Mr. Abrams-Rivera led Pepperidge Farm as president for three years. During that time he helped grow Goldfish into the top-selling snack cracker in the category through the introduction of new packaging formats, including single-serve multipacks, as well as new varieties, including organic wheat versions. He also was at the helm for the launch of the Farmhouse cookie brand, which has been a top performer for the company since its introduction.
Following the $6.1 billion acquisition of Snyder’s-Lance in 2018, Mr. Abrams-Rivera was named president of Campbell Snacks, a new unit that combined the Pepperidge Farm and Snyder’s-Lance products under one portfolio. Under his leadership, the division generated approximately $3.8 billion in sales in fiscal 2019, making it the No. 3 snacks company in the United States.
Mark Clouse, president and c.e.o. at Campbell Soup Co., will lead the snacks division until a new leader is in place. The search for a successor already is underway, the company said.
“We are confident that we will attract a world-class executive to lead our talented Snacks management team and continue to grow this differentiated portfolio of brands,” Mr. Clouse said. “We thank Carlos for his significant contributions during his five years at Campbell.”
Prior to joining Pepperidge Farm in 2015, Mr. Abrams-Rivera held several roles at Mondelez International, including president of gum and candy for Mondelez Latin America, president of Mondelez Mexico and senior vice-president of global beverages. He got his start at Kraft Foods, where he held several roles, including senior vice-president of marketing and strategy for developing markets, vice-president of Nabisco Savory Snacks and vice-president of global biscuits brands.
He received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Carnegie Mellon University and a master’s degree in marketing and strategy from the University of Michigan Business School.