Karl R. Johnson, a top executive with Foote Cone and Belding and Dr. Pepper/Cadbury Beverages, joined Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc., yesterday as Vice President of the company’s new product division.
As the newest member of the company’s executive team, Johnson reports directly to President and Chief Operating Officer Randy Papadellis, the former Welch’s marketing chief who joined Ocean Spray in July. Chief Executive Officer Rob Hawthorne and Chief Financial Officer Tim Chan, both Pillsbury veterans, joined the grower cooperative earlier this year.
“In the next few years, the introduction of new products and innovative ideas will play an important role in building the Ocean Spray brand,” said Papadellis. “Karl Johnson has the experience and strategic business capability to develop new ideas sure to delight our customers.”
At Dr.Pepper/Cadbury, Johnson spent seven years in marketing and strategic business positions in various beverage channels, as well as with Cadbury’s Mott’s USA division. There he developed and led an alternative market structure for several beverage brands outside the conventional distribution system.
Prior to that, Johnson held product and marketing positions with PepsiCo, Inc., managing new products, single serve product lines, and vending businesses for Frito-Lay, Inc., and new products/concept development for KFC.
Johnson, most recently Vice President and Management Director of Foote Cone and Belding in Chicago, was responsible for over $100 million in consumer accounts, including such leading brands as Gatorade/Quaker Oats, Sara Lee, and Bristol-Myers Squibb.
In his new role at Ocean Spray, Johnson will oversee the new product development division, a business unit formed earlier this year to focus solely on developing business channels and new product innovations.
Johnson holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from Babson College in Massachusetts.
Ocean Spray is the number-one brand of canned and bottled juice drinks in the U.S. Formed in 1930, the cooperative is made up of 804 cranberry growers from Massachusetts, Wisconsin, New Jersey, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia and other parts of Canada, as well as 126 Florida grapefruit growers. For more information on Ocean Spray, visit us on the web: http://www.oceanspray.com.