Coca-Cola’s chief US marketing executive Mary Minnick is leaving the group to "pursue a combination of professional goals" in the UK.
Minnick’s departure comes less than two months after she was passed over for the role of president and chief operating officer. Muhtar Kent was promoted to the post in December, putting him in pole position to succeed Neville Isdell as chief executive.
Minnick, currently vice president of marketing, strategy and innovation, will leave Coke at the end of February, ending her 23-year career with the soft drinks giant.
Minnick was promoted to the top marketing role at Coke in March 2005 as part of a plan to overhaul the brand’s marketing and reinvigorate its innovation strategy amid declining sales across its soft drinks portfolio. She was previously head of the company’s Asia operation.
During her tenure she built a global marketing team and encouraged senior management to boost its marketing budget by $400m (£203m) annually taking it above $2bn (£1bn).
Minnick is the second senior executive to leave Coke in the past six last months. Donald Knauss resigned as head of North American operations in August to become chief executive of cleaning products company Clorox.