Albertsons announced Jennifer Saenz as its new chief merchandising officer, a role previously filled by Geoff White, who was promoted from his time as head of the private brands group.
Chad Coester replaced White as the senior vice president of Own Brands and has been in the position for nearly two years reporting directly to White.
Albertsons said White has taken a leave of absence.
Saenz will report to CEO Vivek Sankaran and Coester and the Own Brands team will report to her. She joins the organization from PepsiCo, where she served as global chief marketing officer and president of global foods. Albertsons also recently hired both Alice Chan, vice president of sales and marketing, Own Brands, and Beto Galvan, vice president of innovation and product management, Own Brands, from the PepsiCo organization.
At PepsiCo, Saenz was responsible for the company’s $30 billion PepsiCo Foods portfolio. She’s been with Pepsi since 2015 in increasing roles. From 2015 to 2019 Saenz served as SVP, CMO of PepsiCo Foods North America, where she accelerated growth and drove innovation for the $16 billion snacking portfolio. From 2009 to 2015 she held a number of brand and customer marketing positions within Frito-Lay.
“I am honored to join Albertsons, and to work with Vivek and the company’s talented management team,” said Saenz. “Albertsons is undertaking a transformation that is further strengthening its position as an industry leader focused on deepening its relationship with customers. I am excited to leverage my experience and partner with our vendors to continue providing great products and great value to our customers.”
Saenz has been recognized for her professional accomplishments through a number of awards, including Fast Company’s Most Creative People in 2018, Brand Innovators’ Top 100 Women in Marketing in 2017, 2018 and 2019, and AdWeek’s Brand Genius Award in 2017.
“We’re excited to welcome Jennifer to the Albertsons team,” said Sankaran. “A commitment to serving our customers with a broad and differentiated assortment of products is a key aspect of our transformation strategy. Jennifer’s extensive global industry experience and proven track record of driving growth through marketing, analytics and product innovation, grounded in a deep understanding of the consumer, will allow her to make significant contributions to our business and elevate the Albertsons brand for our customers, brand partners and associates.”