Kraft Heinz appoints international chief growth officer

Food giant Kraft Heinz has appointed Cristina Kenz as chief growth officer for its international business.

Kenz will be responsible for setting central strategy, driving innovation and building capabilities across category, marketing services, brand build, insights, and R&D teams for the company’s International Zone.

She joins Kraft Heinz from Danone, where she was most recently general manager of marketing for Spain, vice president South Europe Dairy and an elected European board member.

Prior to Danone, Kenz spent nearly 13 years at PepsiCo, first as European planning director, while on secondment from advertising agency BBDO, then as Iberia marketing director and finally as global marketing officer for Lay’s – PepsiCo’s largest food brand. She has also previously held planning and leadership roles at BBDO, Grey Group and Ogilvy & Mather.

Kenz will report directly to International Zone president Rafael Oliveira.

Kraft Heinz is starting to show signs of stability after a turbulent few years following the merger of Kraft Foods and HJ Heinz in 2015 that depressed its share price.

City analysts now suggest that a turnaround of the company is likely, with the coronavirus crisis playing a key role in this recovery process. It has driven a surge in demand for canned foods – such as Heinz Beanz in the UK – which has required production capacity to be ramped up at the huge Kitt Green canning plant in the north west of England.