Pinnacle CEO moves on to Keurig

by Rebekah Schouten
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WATERBURY, VT. — Robert J. Gamgort has been named chief executive officer of Keurig Green Mountain, a subsidiary of JAB Holding Co., effective May 2. He will replace Brian Kelley, who will become vice-chairman of the board. Gamgort is currently the CEO of Pinnacle Foods, Inc., a position he plans to abdicate at the end of April.

Bob Gamgort, Pinnacle Foods
Robert J. Gamgort, new CEO of Keurig Green Mountain

“The decision to leave Pinnacle is a difficult one, as I am very proud of the unique business model that we have developed and the significant value that we have created for all stakeholders,” Gamgort said. “I am most proud, however, of the strong management team and board of directors that we have built, as they will continue to drive Pinnacle’s future success.  Finally, I have great confidence that my significant investment in Pinnacle is in capable hands.”

The Pinnacle board of directors is already evaluating both internal and external candidates for the open position. The company said the search process is expected to end in time for a seamless transition with Gamgort. 

Roger Deromedi, Pinnacle Foods
Roger K. Deromedi, chairman of Pinnacle

“Bob has been an outstanding CEO since 2009, having led the organization from private to public ownership,” said Roger K. Deromedi, chairman of Pinnacle. “The clarity of Pinnacle’s strategy, combined with the strength of both its leadership team and board of directors, gives me confidence in our ability to deliver attractive shareholder returns, including our expectation for another strong year in 2016. While we are disappointed that Bob will be leaving Pinnacle, we thank him for his years of leadership that have positioned the company for continued success and wish him well in his new role.”

Gamgort joined Pinnacle in 2009, and in his seven years as CEO he increased the value of the company over five times. Before Pinnacle, Gamgort was the North American president for Mars, which he joined in 1998 as vice-president of marketing for M&M and then became general manager of its chocolate unit. Prior to Mars, Gamgort held marketing, sales, corporate strategy and general management roles at Kraft Foods.

“I am excited to have the opportunity to partner with JAB and the Keurig team,” Gamgort said. “I see a significant opportunity to build upon Keurig’s unique combination of brands, partners and technologies by accelerating innovation and expanding penetration of single-serve systems to continue winning in the consumer market. I look forward to joining the team.”

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