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Yum Brands veteran tapped for new COO post

Yum Brands veteran tapped for new COO post

David Gibbs will remain CFO until replacement found, remains as president

Veteran Yum Brands Inc. executive David Gibbs, left, has been promoted to the new position of chief operating officer and will continue as president, the company announced Monday.

Gibbs, who joined what is now Yum for 29 years, has served as the Louisville, Ky.-based multi-brand company’s president and chief financial officer for the past two years.

As COO, “Gibbs will assume operating leadership of global KFC Division as well as the U.S. and international businesses of Pizza Hut and Taco Bell,” the company said.

Leaders of the three Yum brands will report directly to Gibbs. Those brand leaders include: Tony Lowings, CEO the KFC division; Julie Masino, president of Taco Bell North America; Liz Williams, president of Taco Bell International; Artie Starrs, president of Pizza Hut U.S.; and Vipul Chawla, president of Pizza Hut International.

The company said Gibbs, 55, will continue to perform CFO duties while Yum searches for his successor. He will continue to report directly to CEO Greg Creed.

“David is an extraordinarily talented commercial leader with a strong track record of results and deep experience in all three of Yum’s global brands,” Creed said in a statement.

“As we enter the last year of our three-year transformation,” Creed said, the Yum Brands board of directors and I are confident David’s expanded leadership will continue to shape the next wave of growth as we strive to build the world’s most loved, trusted and fastest-growing restaurant brands.”

As CFO, Gibbs was the chief architect behind Yum’s refranchising strategy. By the end of 2018, Gibbs said 98 percent of Yum’s restaurants were owned and operated by franchisees.

“With three category-leading brands, a uniquely diversified global business and more than 48,000 restaurants,” Gibbs said in a statement, “Yum is well positioned to accelerate growth and improve franchise unit economics by leveraging our massive scale and expanding our digital technology and delivery capabilities.”

Gibbs has held various positions at the company since joining it in 1989. Previously, he was CEO of the global Pizza Hut division and president and CFO of Yum Restaurants International.

Contact Nancy Luna at [email protected] 

Follow her on Twitter: @FastFoodMaven

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