C-SUITE

Starbucks taps former Hyatt, Yum! Brands exec as CFO

BY Marianne Wilson

Starbucks Corp. has named a 25-years-plus financial executive to its C-suite.

The coffee giant appointed Patrick Grismer executive VP and CFO.

He succeeds Scott Maw, who will retire on Nov. 30, but remain a senior consultant through March 2019 to ensure a smooth transition. Grismer will join Starbucks on Nov. 12, and assume the CFO role on Nov. 30.

Grismer joins Starbucks from his current position as CFO of Hyatt, which he has held since joining the company in March 2016. Prior to Hyatt, Grismer spent 14 years at Yum! Brands, during which he held a variety of leadership positions at Yum! Brands through14 years, including CFO.

Before Yum! Brands, Grismer served in a number of finance and strategy positions at The Walt Disney Company, including VP of business planning and development for The Disneyland Resort. Grismer began his career as a management consultant with Price Waterhouse.

“As a seasoned CFO of multiple global, consumer-facing growth companies, Pat brings tremendous finance expertise, a customer-centric mindset and a wealth of restaurant industry experience to Starbucks,” said Kevin Johnson, Starbucks president and CEO. “Pat will be a fantastic addition to the team, and I look forward to partnering with him as we continue to execute against our strategic priorities and drive strong financial performance.”

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Fast-growing, fast-casual restaurant brand names COO

BY Marianne Wilson

Mod Super Fast Pizza Holdings, which will open about 100 locations this year, has tapped an experienced executive to help oversee its aggressive growth.

Mod announced the appointment of John Maguire as COO, effective October 22, 2018. He will lead the company’s store operations across its more than 380 locations, with a strong focus on all phases of expansion and growth. Maguire will report directly to Paul Twohig, Mod’s president. (Twohig was previously president and COO). Twohig will continue to lead store development (domestic and international real estate, design and construction), culinary, supply chain, and international and franchise operations.

Maguire was previously president and CEO of FIC Restaurants Inc. (Friendly’s restaurants), a position he held since 2012. In 2016, he subsequently took on the role of president and CEO of Johnny Rockets Group in addition to his position with FIC. Across both private-equity-owned companies, Maguire led global operations, franchising and store development for a combined 625 locations.

Prior to his time with Friendly’s and Johnny Rockets, Maguire spent 20 years at Panera Bread, in numerous retail operations roles, the last six of which were spent as executive VP and COO.

“As a leader at Panera during their formative years of growth combined with his experience leading two loved brands, John brings the perfect mix of deep operating expertise combined with experience sustaining the culture required to build an iconic brand,” said Scott Svenson, co-founder and CEO of Mod “Most importantly, though, John lives the values and beliefs at the heart of MOD. The thing which most attracted him was our commitment to using our business as a platform to make a positive impact on our people and the communities we serve.”

Mod, a 2017 winner of Chain Store Age’s Breakout Retailers Awards, was founded in 2008 with a “people-first” mission. It is well known for its support of local non-profits and also for its employee-centric culture. In addition to above industry-average pay and benefits, and hiring people with special needs, Mod maintains an emergency fund that provides financial assistance to employees in times of expected need.

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Joann Stores on hunt for a new CEO

BY Marianne Wilson

J.C. Penney’s gain is Joann Stores’ loss.

Joann Stores is on the hunt for a new chief executive in the wake of the departure of Jill Soltau who has resigned as president and CEO, effective immediately, to take the top spot at J.C. Penney. Wade Miquelon, executive VP and CFO will serve as interim president and CEO of Joann, while continuing in his current role as executive VP and CFO, while the board conducts an executive search process.

“On behalf of the board of directors, I want to thank Jill for her leadership and vision to achieve sustained, profitable growth during her tenure at Joann, and wish her the best in her future endeavors,” said John Yoon, principal, Leonard Green & Partners, which acquired Joann in 2011.

Miquelon joined Joann as executive VP and CFO in March 2016 and partnered with Soltau to advance a strategic growth plan that includes revitalized branding, refreshed merchandising strategy, expanded digital capabilities, and customer-focused storefront innovation, the company said. Previously, he was executive VP, CFO and president of international at The Walgreen Company.

Joann operates more than 865 stores across 49 states.

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