Irvine, CA, July 25, 2019 – Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE: YUM) today announced that it has appointed Mark King as Taco Bell Division Chief Executive Officer who will assume global responsibility for driving the brand’s growth strategy, franchise operations and performance.
King, 60, former President of adidas Group North America, will join the Company as Taco Bell Division Chief Executive Officer effective August 5, 2019, reporting to David Gibbs, President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer, Yum! Brands. King brings to Taco Bell and Yum! Brands extensive retail experience and an excellent track record driving growth, innovation, brand relevance and culture.
“We believe this global brand division leadership structure at Taco Bell will enable the U.S. and international teams to further implement innovative best practices worldwide, strengthen digital and technology capabilities and accelerate growth for franchisees and shareholders,” said Greg Creed, Chief Executive Officer, Yum! Brands. “Mark is an accomplished retail innovator and a strong culture leader who will continue to elevate Taco Bell into a relevant, easy and distinctive global brand.”
“Mark King is the ideal executive to elevate Taco Bell to the next level of global growth,” said Gibbs. “His unique talent rewriting the rules for brands to win in fiercely competitive markets will be central to Taco Bell’s journey to become a $15 billion brand that transcends the quick-service restaurant and retail categories. We’re privileged to be in a position to add Mark’s high caliber talent to the strong and accomplished Taco Bell leadership team we have in place. We’re also very proud that Julie Felss Masino and Liz Williams have delivered fantastic results to ensure Taco Bell remains an innovative and growing Category of One brand in the U.S. and internationally.”
Julie Felss Masino, Taco Bell North America President, and Liz Williams, Taco Bell International President, will report to King. Under their leadership, Taco Bell continued its success outpacing the industry and delivering its seventh consecutive year of positive same-store sales growth in 2018.
King joins Taco Bell after successfully leading global sporting goods businesses with adidas. Most recently, he served as President, adidas Group North America, before he decided to step down in 2018 and conclude an exceptional career with adidas as Executive Emeritus. Under King’s leadership the previous four years, adidas became the fastest-growing sports brand in North America, increasing sales by 35 percent in 2017, doubling its market share and regaining the No. 2 position in the U.S. From 2003 to 2014, King was CEO of Taylor Made-adidas Golf, a division that became the leading and most profitable golf company in the world.
“The courage, creativity, culture and potential of Taco Bell make it the only brand I would become part of at this point in my career,” said King. “I’m truly excited and honored to join Yum! Brands and to work with Julie, Liz and the talented team of employees and franchisees who are already making Taco Bell a powerhouse global brand with extraordinary possibilities for the future.”
About Taco Bell
Taco Bell Corp., a subsidiary of Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE: YUM), is the world's leading Mexican-inspired quick-service restaurant brand. Taco Bell serves made-to-order and customizable tacos and burritos and other specialties with bold flavors, quality ingredients, breakthrough value, and best-in-class customer service to over 40 million customers weekly across the globe. Globally, Taco Bell and its franchisees operate more than 7,100 restaurants, including nearly 500 restaurants across nearly 30 countries outside of the U.S. The brand plans to become a $15 billion company in global system sales with 9,000 restaurants globally.