Newell Rubbermaid Snags P&G Marketing Veteran

Atlanta-based Newell Rubbermaid has been turning its business around since CEO Mark Ketchum took the reins after joining from Procter & Gamble in 2005.

Now the company, which owns office brands like Sharpie and Paper Mate pens, as well as Rolodex, Graco infant products, Rubbermaid and Calphalon cookware, has snagged another P&G vet. Ted Woehrle, P&G's vice president/marketing for North America, will become senior vice president/marketing and brand management, a new position at Newell Rubbermaid.

The hire comes as the company moves to more consumer-focused marketing, where it is seeing the most growth. Newell Rubbermaid, whose corporate tag is "Brands that Matter," saw 2006 sales grow 8.5%, to $6.20 billion, versus $5.72 billion the prior year, with home and family market segments garnering double-digit sales growth versus commercial products. In the first quarter this year, sales increased 3.1%.

Woehrle, 46, who has been at P&G for 24 years, will report directly to Ketchum. Most recently, he was vice president of marketing for North America, where he led the communication planning, media buying, and direct marketing efforts for P&G's $32 billion portfolio of North American brands, including Tide, Crest, Pantene, Pampers and Gillette.



Before that, Woehrle oversaw Tremor, P&G's buzz-marketing agency. He has also held brand manager, marketing director and general manager assignments in the Food & Beverage and Family Care business groups. Woehrle also serves the marketing community outside P&G on the board of directors of the Ad Council and as a committee chair for the Association of National Advertisers.

"I think this new job reflects the evolution of Newell Rubbermaid's direction under Mark Ketchum," says Woehrle. "He has been dedicated to making Rubbermaid more consumer-centric and brand-centric, and establishing this position also makes it more leadership-centric. It's really a logical next step in that progress."

He says initial work will include assessing the current agency roster around messages and media mix to reach consumers when and where they are most receptive.

"When I look across the portfolio, I see strong brands, so I'm excited about that, I'm a excited that these brands have strong equity and they have strong potential to grow--their shoulders are broad and there is room to expand offerings under them; and there's room for innovation and investment to help communicate their benefits."

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