Ryvita appoints ex-Signet executive as marketing chief

Ryvita has appointed former Signet marketing chief Rob Murray as marketing director, after a four-month search.

The appointment comes as a result of Ryvita splitting its sales and marketing directorship. Sales and marketing director Philippe Seurre has become the company’s sales director (MW July 4).

Murray has spent ten years in consumer marketing, at Nestlé and Johnson & Johnson. In 1997, he moved to Signet Group where he headed the marketing department of jeweller H Samuel. In 1999, he founded branding consultancy group Distillery.

Murray joins Ryvita in an eventful year for the company. In May, it launched a range of rice cakes backed by a £1m marketing spend. This was the first time the crispbread maker had extended its brand beyond its core product (MW May 16).

In February, Ryvita appointed Walsh Trott Chick Smith to handle its £1.5m advertising business, following a three-way pitch (MW February 21). The account came into play after Publicis resigned it, because of increasing conflict with its McVitie’s Go Ahead business. The subsequent advertising by WTCS downplayed Ryvita’s slimming heritage, focusing on the product’s health properties.

This week, the group unveiled preliminary results for the year to September 14. Operating profit was up by 13 per cent to £395m, on sales up three per cent to £4.5bn.

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