Burger King Parts With CMO Natalia Franco

Fast Feeder Folds Role Into Global Brand Marketing and Operations Function

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Just less than nine months after joining Burger King Corp., Exec VP-Global Chief Marketing Officer Natalia Franco is out at the fast feeder.

The news comes in conjunction with changes to the company's global brand management and operations function, as well as to its North American marketing structure. Burger King has aligned the company's global brand marketing and global operations teams to create a single global brand marketing and operations function.

Natalia Franco
Natalia Franco

"During her tenure at BKC, Natalia has made important contributions to the brand; building the foundation for us to deliver strong marketing messages and executions that will resonate with our consumers long-term," said Burger King Corp. CEO Bernardo Hees in a statement. "I would like to thank Natalia for her energy and commitment to the Burger King brand and wish her well in her future endeavors."

Ms. Franco joined Burger King in May, filling a protracted absence of a top marketing position at the fast feeder known for its male-centric marketing. (CP&B, Miami, is Burger King's creative agency.) Predecessor Russ Klein took a leave of absence in September 2009, and the company confirmed his departure in November.

As part of the company's realignment, Jonathan Fitzpatrick, formerly exec VP-global operations, will take on the newly created role of exec VP-chief brand and operations officer. He will oversee all operations and marketing brand standards, global research and development, product innovation and global brand management. Steve Wiborg, exec VP and president-North America, will take on an expanded role that includes responsibility for all North American marketing efforts. Burger King's North American CMO, Mike Kappitt, who reported to Ms. Franco, departed the company in December.

"Our new marketing and operations alignment under Jonathan's global leadership and Steve's North America leadership will allow us to maintain our global standards, while providing us with the flexibility we need to execute initiatives on a regional level based on local business needs," said Mr. Hees. "With this new structure in place, we can be more nimble with our decision-making process and marketing execution, which will better resonate with the millions of guests around the world who enjoy the Burger King brand every day."

Prior to joining Burger King, Ms. Franco was global VP-marketing and innovation at Coca-Cola Co., where she was charged with supervision of the brand's division that serviced BK rival McDonald's.

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