Top Ovaltine marketing role goes to Jacob’s man

Ovaltine maker Wander will appoint Jacob’s Bakery marketing manager Melvin Jay as its new marketing director next month.

The post became vacant in January after Debra Eddy left to become managing director of organic food distributor Brewhurst.

Jay, who is responsible for countlines at Jacob’s, will take charge of the Ovaltine range of products and Isostar, the sports energy drink.

He confirms he is leaving Jacob’s but refuses to comment on his departure.

Jay leaves behind a company forced to close its Reading headquarters in an effort to cut costs, and move up to its Aintree factory site. The Reading offices are due to close in June, with redundancies highly likely to ensue.

Jacob’s, which is part of the Danone food group, is restructuring into a category management structure, with three marketing managers in charge of countlines, sweet biscuits and cream crackers.

Managing director David Freedman was unavailable for comment as Marketing Week went to press.

Jacob’s Bakery is delisting its Club brand’s premium line extension, Club Class. Sources say the product was seen as too expensive. Meanwhile, the company is preparing to launch a King Size Club biscuit.

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