Ending a long search, the Quaker Oats Co. has brought in a top marketer from fellow PepsiCo unit Frito-Lay North America as chief marketing officer.
Justin Lambeth, a Frito-Lay VP who led marketing for brands such as Lay's, Tostitos and Sun Chips, will join Quaker on Jan. 30. He will oversee brand insights, strategic communications, core innovation, shopper marketing and digital activation, Quaker said.
"We are fortunate to have the internal expertise and talent to fill this key role with another outstanding leader from PepsiCo," Quaker said in a statement.
A small cog in PepsiCo's machine, Quaker remains profitable but is trying to turn around slumping revenue and market-share losses. Quaker Foods North America was the only PepsiCo unit with a net revenue decline (2%) in the 36 -week period ending Sept. 3, although it had 2% growth in the last 12 weeks of the period, PepsiCo reported.
Kirsten Lynch, CMO since late 2009, left in April for personal reasons. Kathryn Matheson, a 15-year PepsiCo veteran in Canada, took the post on an interim basis. Ms. Matheson is returning to Canada, Quaker said.
Quaker, which PepsiCo acquired about 10 years ago, is a key part of its strategy to push nutrition. But the unit is in some tough categories. In oatmeal, for instance, it is fending off competition from private label and chains such as McDonald's, which have moved into the space.
Pepsi has pledged to put more marketing spending behind Quaker, which got $56 million in measured-media outlays in 2010. Earlier this week, Quaker announced that it will be the jersey sponsor of the Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer.