DOWNERS GROVE, Ill. – Sara Lee Corp. hosted its annual "Meet the Management" analyst meeting in New York on Sept. 14. Marcel Smits, interim chairman and chief executive officer, and other members of senior management provided an overview of fiscal 2010 results and discussed long-term strategies and growth opportunities.

Monty Pooley, president, North American Retail, outlined the strategies that have led to this business’ impressive recent performance, including a 34% increase in adjusted operating segment income in fiscal 2010. Strategies include:

  • Focusing on building the best brands — such as Ball Park, Hillshire Farm, Jimmy Dean and Sara Lee — which has led to strong and growing No. 1 and No. 2 positions in most key categories.
  • Increased focus on wellness and nutrition — such as offering products with lower sodium, fat and calories.
  • Multi-cultural marketing — The segment is focusing on marketing to Hispanic and African-American audiences.

Tom Hayes, chief supply chain officer, North American Retail and Foodservice, provided an update on the company’s supply chain and its business benefits. Hayes said the company’s Kansas City, Kan., meat processing plant is on schedule to start shipping products in early 2011.