See The List of 28 Brand Managers Who Left Pepsi As Sales Collapsed

Sarah Robb O’Hagan

Photo: PepsiCo

PepsiCo just lost its top executive on Gatorade, one of the few drinks brands where business is heading in the right direction at the troubled beverage giant.Sarah Robb O’Hagan, president-Gatorade and president-Global Sports Nutrition Group, will join fellow Pepsi alum Cie Nicholson at Equinox, according to Dow Jones.

Robb O’Hagan is the 28th senior brand manager to exit Pepsi since 2008. The company, after a years-long list of setbacks, is trying to turn itself around—spending up to $600 million more on marketing and ads—but the company’s management suite, under CEO Indra Nooyi, suffers from near-constant musical chairs. Robb O’Hagan will be replaced by Debra Crew as president-PepsiCo Beverages Americas, according to Ad Age.

PepsiCo’s Q2 earnings were more of the same: revenues were down $369 million to $16.5 billion, and its flagship Pepsi soda division was down 5% to $5.3 billion.

There was one bright spot, however: The non-carbonated beverage unit, which houses Gatorade, saw a 1% increase in volume sold, according to its 10-Q: “The non-carbonated beverage volume growth primarily reflected a mid-single-digit increase in Gatorade sports drinks, partially offset by a double-digit decline in Tropicana brands.”

Management appears to be comforting itself with … surveys:

Chief Financial Officer Hugh Johnson said brand-equity scores are stable or improving in 85% of the company’s key brands in strategic markets, with sequential improvement from the first quarter to the second quarter.

Uh huh. But “brand equity scores” don’t pay the rent. Selling soda does.

With Robb O’Hagan’s move, we’ve updated our big list of execs who parachuted out of Pepsi.

2008

  • Chris Kempczinski, vp/marketing. Went to Kraft Foods as svp of the U.S. Grocery Division.
  • Russell Weiner, vp/cola marketing. Became chief marketing officer at Domino's Pizza.
  • Cie Nicholson, svp/chief marketing officer. Is now evp/chief marketing officer Equinox.

2009

  • Mike White, CEO of PepsiCo International (retired)
  • Rick Gomez vp/marketing for waters, enhanced waters and juices. He went to a top marketing position at Coors.
  • Jeff Urban, svp/sports marketing at Gatorade. Now a partner at Kids Sports Entertainment.
  • Todd Magazine, president of Gatorade. Now President N. America/consumer healthcare at Pfizer.
  • Jim McGinnis, vp/marketing for Tropicana. Now vp/marketing at Intuit.
  • Dave Burwick, svp/chief marketing officer, PepsiCo North America Beverages. Now president, North America at Weight Watchers.

2010

  • John Galloway, vp/marketing Gatorade.
  • Ralph Santana, North America vp/colas. He went to become Samsung's chief marketing officer.
  • Tom Silk, VP Hydration. He went to KB Homes as svp/marketing.
  • Danielle Vona, vp/marketing for the Propel water brand. She went to become chief marketing officer at Sonic Drive-in.
  • Richard Burjaw, general manager of the Starbucks/PepsiCo partnership. Now a speaker and guest lecturer in Toronto.
  • Mark Schiller, senior vice president Frito Lay New Ventures. Now an evp at Pinnacle Foods and president of Duncan Hines.

2011

  • Eric Foss, CEO of Pepsi Beverages Company, retired.
  • Jill Beraud, SVP CMO - Beverages. She went to Starbucks/Lipton Joint Ventures as president and chief marketing officer.
  • Lauren Hobart, svp/chief marketing officer for carbonated brands. She went to Dick's Sporting Goods as svp/chief marketing officer.
  • Jeff Dubeil, vp/sports marketing.
  • Andy Horrow, chief marketing officer for Tropicana. Went to become the CMO for Mike's Hard Lemonade.
  • Kirsten Lynch, CMO of Quaker foods. Now the CMO of Vail Resorts.

2012 to date

  • Sarah Robb O'Hagan, president-Gatorade and president-Global Sports Nutrition Group. Left to become president of Equinox.
  • Massimo d'Amore, CEO global beverages, retired.
  • Jaya Kumar, president/Global Nutrition Group.
  • Julie Hamp SVP, Chief Communications Officer, PEP
  • Van Sapp, svp/sales, Pepsi Beverage Company
  • Bonin Bough, Director of Social Media, PEP
  • We hear one other senior brand management executive has left this year but we were unable to confirm his name and title at the time of publication.

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