Yum! Brands has promoted David Gibbs, 55, to president and chief operating officer (COO), reporting to Chief Executive Officer Greg Creed.
Gibbs, a 29-year veteran of the company, has served as president and chief financial officer for the last two years. In his expanded role as president and COO, Gibbs will assume operating leadership of global KFC Division as well as the U.S. and international businesses of Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, with the respective brand leaders reporting to him. Gibbs will retain his current Yum! Brands CFO role, title and responsibilities overseeing corporate strategy, finance, supply chain and information technology, while the company conducts a search to identify a successor CFO.
“I’m happy to announce our promotion of David Gibbs to president and chief operating officer. David is an extraordinarily talented commercial leader with a strong track record of results and deep experience in all three of YUM’s global brands,” said Creed. “He has been an invaluable strategic partner to me during a pivotal time for Yum! Brands, from the 2016 spinoff of the China business to driving the franchise operating, restaurant development and financial strategies that are reshaping KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell into more focused, franchised and efficient businesses. As we enter the last year of our three-year transformation, the Yum! Brands Board of Directors and I are confident David’s expanded leadership will continue to shape the next wave of growth as we strive to build the world’s most loved, trusted and fastest-growing restaurant brands,” Creed added.
“I’m grateful for the opportunity to lead Yum! Brands in an expanded capacity, and look forward to partnering with Greg, our global leadership team and our franchisees,” said Gibbs. “The transformation we started in 2016 is already making Yum! Brands a stronger company, franchisor and investment. We’ve achieved our stated goal of 98 percent of our restaurants being owned and operated by franchisees by the end of 2018, and are on track to deliver on our commitments for the transformation. With three category-leading brands, a uniquely diversified global business and more than 48,000 restaurants, YUM is well positioned to accelerate growth and improve franchise unit economics by leveraging our massive scale and expanding our digital technology and delivery capabilities,” Gibbs added.
Creed will continue leading the company’s global growth strategy and culture. In addition to Gibbs, the following Yum! Brands leaders will continue reporting to Creed: Chief Marketing Strategy Officer Ken Muench; Chief Transformation and People Officer Tracy Skeans; General Counsel and Corporate Secretary Scott Catlett; and the successor CFO when hired.
Since joining in 1989, Gibbs has held a variety of leadership roles in all three of YUM’s global brands, including global strategy, finance, general management, operations and real estate. Most recently, he served as Yum! Brands president and chief financial officer, and was the chief architect of Yum! Brands’ financial, refranchising and restaurant development strategy to transform the company into a capital-light, pure play franchisor. Previously, he was CEO of the global Pizza Hut Division, and President and CFO of Yum! Restaurants International, responsible for growing KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell outside the U.S. and China, along with having general management responsibility for several international markets. Gibbs also served as Yum! chief strategy officer during which time he revamped Yum! Brands’ global restaurant operations model, as Pizza Hut U.S. CFO and in various real estate and restaurant development leadership roles in KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.