In a press release issued Friday, Mann said Corona's contract with The Gambrinus Co. had expired, and that he was moving on to new opportunities. Corona's 20-year relationship with Gambrinus was a "remarkable success story," he said: the Modelo brand portfolio, including the No. 1 imported beer, Corona Extra, grew more than 600% under his leadership as marketing group general manager for Gambrinus. He will leave that company early this year. Mann began his brand management career with Kraft. There was no comment from Grupo Modelo.
Pernod Ricard USA announced that Patrick Piana starts Jan. 18 as senior vice president for spirits marketing. He comes from Moet Hennessy USA, where he also was a senior vice president. His mission is to drive breakthrough marketing for Pernod's expanded portfolio of premium and super-premium spirits and category leaders, including Chivas Regal, Martell, Kahlua, Malibu, Stoli, Beefeater, Glenlivet and Jameson. Piana also will develop and execute global marketing strategy for Pernod Ricard USA-owned brands, including Seagram's Gin, Wild Turkey and Hiram Walker Liqueurs. Formerly, Piana was head of marketing for Schieffelin & Somerset, and began his marketing career at Philip Morris.
CKE Restaurants announced the appointment of Anne Blumenstein as vice president of regional marketing and media for its Carl's Jr. restaurant. She will oversee all local restaurant marketing, media planning and placement for Carl's Jr. advertising, and all local and system-wide beverage and consumer promotions, effective immediately. Prior to joining Carl's Jr., Blumenstein served as director of Jack in the Box's regional marketing division, overseeing initiatives at more than 2,000 restaurants. Past industry experience includes work for Einstein Brothers Bagels and McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurant. Blumenstein replaces former vice president of field marketing and media Renae Scott, who left the company in 2006.
At Baja Fresh, industry veteran Meade Wildrick has been named director of marketing and will direct the chain's branding and marketing initiatives, focusing his efforts on solidifying the brand's position as the fast-casual segment leader and establishing the direction for all future advertising and marketing efforts. Wildrick comes from Del Taco, where he worked extensively with the franchise community focusing on emerging markets. Prior to that, Wildrick had client or agency experience with such industry leaders as Disney's ESPN Zone, Burger King Corp., Coca-Cola USA, Jack in the Box and Carl's Jr. restaurants.