tension-escalates-mcdonalds-franchisees8.gif Al Liddle

Global CMO Silvia Lagnado leaving McDonald’s on ‘strong footing’

CEO: Her impact was ‘significant’ as she defined the brand’s purpose

Silvia Lagnado, global chief marketing officer at McDonald’s Corp., is leaving the Chicago-based company in October, according to an internal announcement this week.

Lagnado was hired by the brand in 2015 to oversee its global marketing, menu and customer insights. Specifically, she was tasked to “reignite” customers obsession with the brand through traditional and innovative channels, CEO Steve Easterbrook said in an internal memo obtained by Nation’s Restaurant News. 

Silvia-Lagnado_McDonalds-CMO_.gifDuring her leadership, Easterbrook said Lagnado elevated the company’s focus on consumers by using data. Over the past four years, she encouraged pursuit of technologies that enhance the customer experience including the recent investment in Dynamic Yield’s artificial intelligence-powered menu boards, which automate upselling.

“The impact she had in that time is significant,” Easterbrook wrote in a memo distributed this week to operators, corporate employees and suppliers.  “Silvia led a team that defined the brand’s purpose.”

That mission was making “delicious feel-good moments easy for everyone,” he wrote.

Easterbrook did not provide a reason for her departure, only stating that Lagnado felt the timing was right to exit since the company is on strong footing.

“Silvia has decided this is the right time to pursue new challenges and opportunities,” the CEO wrote.

Easterbrook did not specifically address plans to find a successor to Lagnado, a 2019 NRN Power List recipient.

Instead, he announced two internal promotions including the creation of a new marketing role for Colin Mitchell. The global brand vice president has been promoted to the new position of senior vice president global marketing. In that role, he will oversee the company’s insights and menu innovation teams and report directly to the CEO.

Bob Rupczynski, currently heading the brand’s global digital alignment work, has been appointed to the new role of senior vice president of marketing technology.

“Whilst Silvia will certainly be missed, I hope you’ll agree that with this structure, these leaders and their talented teams, we’re well positioned to continue the vastly important work of delivering customer obsession for our brand and our business,” Easterbrook said.

Chicago-based McDonald’s has about 14,000 restaurants in the U.S. A majority of the chain’s restaurants are run by franchisees.

Contact Nancy Luna at nancy.luna@informa.com 

Follow her on Twitter: @fastfoodmaven

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