Burger King taps Unilever marketer to unify global branding

Burger King has appointed Unilever senior marketer Fernando Machadoas as its first president of global brand management to unify its image worldwide.


Machadoas is tasked with creating one global strategy for the restaurant chain that can then be localised to different markets. He starts the role today (25 March) and reports to Burger King chief marketing officer Axel Schwan.

It is likely any future activity will continue last year’s efforts to promote value as Burger King, along with its rivals, looks to stave off the advances of premium players such as Nando’s and Chipotle.

Prior to his appointment, Machadoas was vice president of global brand development for Dove skin care at Unilever, where he is said to have masterminded the lauded “Real Beauty Sketches” campaign.

His appointment to the newly created role reflects the brand’s move away from decentralised marketing strategies toward fewer, more impactful campaigns. The shift comes shortly after a flurry of changes to its agency roster and the business axing its “Burger King” mascot.

Burger King has made several changes to its senior management team since returning to public markets in 2012, following a buyout from 3G Capital. The restaurant promoted Axel Schwan last October to replace Flavia Faugeres, who left the business at the end of 2013.

Despite the period of upheaval, global sales have held out. Burger King posted its second consecutive year of like-for-like sales growth last month, up 0.5 per cent for the year compared with a 3.2 percent lift in 2012. For the three months to December, same-store sales rose 1.7 per cent.