Coca-Cola starts hunt for global marketing chief

Coca-Cola is looking for a new global marketing chief following the resignation of Stephen Jones.

The former UK Coca-Cola marketer had been expected to quit when Steven Heyer arrived from AOL Time Warner’s Turner Broadcasting System in 2001 as president of new ventures.

Heyer was promoted to president and chief operating officer in December last year and is regarded as heir apparent to chairman Doug Daft. Jones reported to Heyer rather than directly to Daft.

Jones has worked as a marketer for Coca-Cola since 1986 and was based in the UK from 1990 to 1994, first as marketing manager for Coca-Cola Great Britain and then as region manager for the territory.

He was promoted to senior vice-president of consumer marketing for Coca-Cola Japan in 1994.

In 2000, Jones was appointed Coca-Cola’s chief marketing officer.

Coca-Cola has recently developed a new organisational structure focused on the three core operations: marketing, geographic operations and innovation, and research and development.

The company’s earnings fell 22.5 per cent to $3.05bn (£1.95bn) in 2002 and it announced 1,000 job cuts in North America and Germany.

However, the recent launch of Vanilla Coke in the US has proved such a success that PepsiCo is considering developing a similar cola variant. Vanilla Coke is expected to launch in the UK next month.

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