Golden Wonder shake-up triggers senior departure

Golden Wonder marketing manager for crisps David Smith has quit following a restructure which sees the promotion of his opposite number on snacks, Nigel Parrott, to marketing director for all brands.

Parrott will take responsibility for snack and crisp brands such as Wotsits, Nik-Naks, Wheat Crun-chies and Golden Lights. He says: “We are looking for ways to exploit the Golden Wonder brand across all snacks. It may include Cadbury-style umbrella branding.”

Parrott will report to commercial director Paul Monk, who has filled the marketing director role since Paul Boothman switched from marketing director to development director last month.

Smith, who has worked at Golden Wonder since May 1996, is understood to have left without having another job to go to.

An industry source says: “Parrott comes from the power-base of the Wotsits snack brand, which is a significant contributor to Golden Wonder’s profits. Smith had a much tougher job on the crisp side, which is under pressure from Walkers and own-label.”

Smith joined Golden Wonder from US-owned Schwan Europe, where he was marketing manager for Chicago Town Pizza with responsibility for pan-European marketing. Before that, he worked at Nestlé for eight years.

Parrott worked at Cereal Partners before joining Golden Wonder five years ago. He remained with the company following a management buyout from Dalgety in 1995.

In the face of flat sales in the crisps sector, Golden Wonder is to treble its ad spend through sole agency Bartle Bogle Hegarty to 4.5m. The Wheat Crunchies brand is soon to return to TV after a two-year break, and a new ad is to be launched in the “Willie and his Whopping Wotsit” campaign for Wotsits crisps.

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