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James Splinter Hormel
Hormel Foods has named James Splinter the company's vice president of corporate strategy. | Hormel Foods
on September 29, 2016

Hormel Foods promotes 4 people to leadership posts

James Splinter, Steven Venenga, Swen Neufeldt and Luis Marconi assume new roles within company

Hormel Foods has named four people to new leadership positions within the company.

James Splinter is group vice president, corporate strategy

James Splinter has been appointed to the position of group vice president, corporate strategy. In this new role, Splinter will have responsibility for leading the company’s strategic growth areas including innovation, corporate development and strategy, consumer insights and building the company’s digital and e-commerce capabilities across the enterprise. Splinter will report to James P. Snee, president and chief operating officer who will assume the post of chief executive officer on October 31. 

“The growth of Hormel Foods is a product of our continued focus on our formula for success as we grow our portfolio of leading consumer brands, accelerate innovation, complete evolutionary acquisitions and build our balanced portfolio," said Snee.

“Jim Splinter has led impressive growth in our Grocery Products segment by expanding our legacy product portfolio, heading up the recent acquisitions of the Skippy and Justin’s brands and overseeing our MegaMex Foods joint venture. In this new role, Jim will be focused on enhancing our business model, both organically and through strategic acquisitions, across our entire portfolio. He will also provide visionary leadership for our e-commerce capabilities, working closely with our customers to ensure that consumers have access to our products around the world, right from their devices.”

Splinter has more than thirty years of experience with Hormel Foods. He joined the company in 1984 with Dubuque Foods, becoming product manager for retail sausage products in 1990. In 1995, he joined Hormel Foods as product manager for the meat products group in Austin, Minnesota, managing the marketing activities of Hormel pepperoni, which earned a Best Print Media Campaign award from Food and Beverage magazine. In 1997, he joined the Grocery Products division as group product manager for the recipe ingredient group and oversaw the brand revitalization efforts for the Spam family of products. In 1999, Splinter was promoted to senior vice president, sales and marketing of the retail division at Jennie-O Turkey Store. In 2003, he assumed the role of vice president of marketing for consumer products, refrigerated foods. He was promoted to group vice president, grocery products in 2010, successfully leading the segment to achieve strong growth, both organically and through acquisitions.   

Luis Marconi named group vice president, grocery products

In addition to Splinter’s appointment, the company also announced that Luis Marconi will be elevated to group vice president, grocery products. Marconi will be responsible for the leadership of the company’s grocery business and will oversee its vast portfolio of branded grocery products including the Spam family of products, Skippy peanut butter products, Hormel chili, the MegaMex portfolio and Justin’s nut butters. Marconi has provided extensive leadership over the company’s strategic product pillars of global, multicultural, healthy/holistic and on-the-go products. Marconi will report to Steven G.Binder, executive vice president and president, Hormel business units.

Marconi began his career with Hormel Foods in 2000 as the manager of international sales and marketing in the international division. He advanced in 2006 to a senior role in the Grocery Products division as manager of international joint ventures. In 2009, when the MegaMex Foods joint venture was formed, Marconi was appointed managing director by the board of managers. He was appointed vice president of marketing for grocery products at Hormel Foods in 2012. 

Steven Venenga appointed vice president, grocery products marketing

Steven Venenga was named vice president, grocery products marketing. Venenga will work closely with Marconi to elevate the company’s Grocery Products portfolio. Working closely with the brand managers, Venenga will oversee the extensive and growing portfolio of grocery products brands. He will be responsible for driving the segment’s marketing efforts, setting brand strategy and leading the brand and marketing teams. Venenga will report to Marconi.

Venenga joined the company in 1996 as a Jennie-O Turkey Store product marketing manager. He subsequently held several marketing positions within the company. With more than 20 years of combined experience in food product marketing at both Hormel Foods and Jennie-O Turkey Store, Venenga was involved with the brand integration of the Jennie-O Turkey Store brand and a number of retail product launches, including Jennie-O Oven Ready turkeys and Jennie-O turkey burgers. In 2013, Venenga oversaw the successful launch of Hormel Rev wraps. Venenga is a member of the board of directors for Jennie-O Turkey Store. Venenga was appointed to his current role as vice president of marketing for meat products for Hormel Foods in 2011. 

Swen Neufeld named vice president, meat products marketing

Swen Neufeldt has been named vice president, meat products marketing. In this role, Neufeldt will lead the strategic marketing efforts for the company’s growing meat products business, including Hormel Black Label bacon, Hormel Natural Choice products, Hormel Rev wraps and Rev Bites. Neufeldt most recently held the post of president, Hormel Foods International, Asia Pacific, where he led the company’s international expansion in China.

Neufeldt began his career in 1996 as a grocery products sales representative in Birmingham, Ala. And, a year later, became territory manager. That same year he became a grocery products category management specialist at the Corporate Office then became an associate product manager, Grocery Products. In 1999, he became a product and category development manager, International, at the Corporate Office. In 2002, he became senior product manager, International, in England and then general manager of Europe in 2005. In 2006, he came back to the Corporate Office to be a group product manager, grocery products, and in 2010, became the director of business development – Asia and vice president of International in Shanghai, China, and general manager the following year. Two years later he assumed the role of president Hormel Foods International – Asia Pacific. In his role in China, Neufeldt brought robust growth to the company’s operations in China, including a new plant scheduled to open in 2017. 

“Congratulations to Jim, Luis, Steve and Swen on their appointments,” said Snee. “Each of these individuals brings significant leadership experience, unparalleled business acumen and a focused dedication to our customers and consumers. I look forward to working with them in their new roles as we continue to bring enhanced growth and success to the company.”

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