Coca-Cola Unveils Succession Plan

President and COO James Quincey will take over as the beverage company’s CEO in May 2017.

James Quincey, president and chief operating officer, The Coca-Cola Company, and Muhtar Kent, chairman and chief executive officer, The Coca-Cola Company.

The Coca-Cola Company has unveiled a leadership succession plan that will see its current chairman and CEO Muhtar Kent step down after eight years of leading the company.

In a succession plan that Coca-Cola intends to implement in next year, Kent will step down from his current role as chief executive officer, ceding the position to James Quincey, who is currently serving as president and chief operating officer, beginning May 1, 2017.

Kent will continue to serve as chairman of the board of directors.

The Coca-Cola Company is the world’s 48th largest licensor with an estimated $1 billion in licensed retail sales in 2015, according to License Global’s annual Top 150 Global Licensors report.

Quincey was named as the company’s president and chief operating officer in August 2015. Earlier this year, he put in place a new international operating structure and leadership team to make the company more efficient and effective, and has shown leadership in addressing consumer changes by expanding product offerings, according to the company.

Prior to his current position, he served as president of The Coca-Cola Company’s Europe group. During his tenure, the Europe group was the company’s most profitable operating group as it expanded its brand portfolio and improved execution across the continent.

Additionally, Quincey has served as president of the Northwest Europe and Nordics business unit as well as the company’s Mexico division, among other positions.

Before joining Coca-Cola in 1996, Quincey was a partner at The Kalchas Group, a spinoff from Bain & Company and McKinsey.

“One of our Board’s key priorities is developing the next generation of leaders and James is a perfect example of our talent pipeline in action,” says Kent. “Having worked closely with James during the past 10 years of his 20-year career with our company, I know that his vast industry knowledge, expertise with our brands, values and system, coupled with an acute understanding of evolving consumer tastes, make him the ideal candidate to effectively lead our company and bottling system. James has the strategic vision and inspirational leadership to usher in the next phase of growth for our great business.”

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