HOUSTON, Jan. 13, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sysco Corporation (NYSE: SYY) (“the Company”), the leading global foodservice distribution company, announced today that Tom Bené will be stepping down from his roles as president and chief executive officer effective January 31, 2020. Tom will stay on with Sysco as an executive advisor until March 1, 2020, to be available to assist with a smooth and orderly transition of leadership for the Company. The board of directors has unanimously elected Kevin Hourican as the Company’s new president and chief executive officer, starting on February 1, 2020. Kevin most recently served as executive vice president of CVS Health and president of CVS Pharmacy and is a proven business leader with two decades of experience driving market-leading growth for large organizations.
The board has elected lead independent director Ed Shirley as executive chair, replacing Tom Bené, and Brad Halverson has been elected as the new lead independent director, both effective January 13, 2020.
While Sysco’s performance has improved steadily the last few years, the board believes that the senior leadership changes announced today will enable the Company to accelerate performance, fully capitalize on its scale advantages and drive meaningful operating improvements. Specifically, the board believes Kevin’s expertise across key company capabilities – sales, supply chain, logistics, operations and digital technologies – will unlock meaningful value for customers and other key stakeholders.
Larry Glasscock, chairman of the governance and nominating committee, said, “As part of a deliberate and thoughtful process to ensure Sysco is best positioned for its next phase of development, we are pleased to announce Kevin Hourican as the Company’s new president and CEO. The board believes Kevin’s leadership and skillset align strongly with Sysco’s strategic priorities in this next phase of accelerated growth. Moreover, Ed’s familiarity with the company and deep experience over decades running highly successful consumer businesses will ensure a smooth leadership transition.”
Mr. Shirley said, “We are pleased to welcome Kevin as our new president and CEO. Kevin brings a demonstrated track record of delivering strong growth, market share gains, customer service improvement and operational efficiencies within large and complex environments, having run an $85 billion business and leading large divisions at multi-unit retailers. He takes a strategic approach to winning in underdeveloped markets while driving new innovation. The board is highly confident Kevin has the skillset and vision to capture the opportunities ahead and we look forward to working with him and the full leadership team to deliver enhanced value for shareholders.”
Ed continued, “Tom has made many significant contributions to Sysco and the board and I are grateful for his leadership, integrity and dedication to our associates and customers. During his seven years at Sysco, he led important strategic initiatives that strengthened the Company’s overall performance and increased shareholder value. As CEO, he also renewed our focus on the customer, fostered a culture of empowerment and elevated the importance of corporate social responsibility, all of which will underpin our future success. The entire board thanks Tom for his dedication and service and we wish him well in his next endeavors.”
Mr. Bené said, “I have been honored to lead Sysco over the last few years and I am incredibly proud of all that our team has accomplished. Sysco’s leading market position in the foodservice industry, our unique capabilities and talented associates have positioned us well for the future. It has truly been an honor and a privilege to work alongside our 69,000 dedicated associates to bring our strategy to life.”
Mr. Hourican said, “I am thrilled to join the Sysco team. Sysco has an exceptional business model and significant headroom for profitable growth. I look forward to working with Ed, the board and the talented global team to continue the company’s success and identify new opportunities to enhance our market leadership and long-term growth prospects."
Kevin Hourican most recently served as executive vice president of CVS Health and president of CVS Pharmacy, overseeing CVS’ $85 billion retail business, including its 9,900 retail stores and over 200,000 employees, as well as merchandising, marketing, supply chain, real estate, front store operations, pharmacy growth, pharmacy clinical care and pharmacy operations. He previously held the role of executive vice president, retail pharmacy and supply chain, and led CVS’ pharmacy operations, professional services and retail pharmacy product innovation and development functions, as well as the company’s supply chain organization. Prior to joining CVS Health, Kevin held executive leadership roles at Macy’s, most recently serving as senior vice president, regional director of stores, responsible for the management of 110 department stores in the Mid-Atlantic region. He holds an undergraduate degree in economics and a master’s degree in supply chain management from The Pennsylvania State University.
Ed Shirley joined the board in 2016 and has served as lead independent director since November 2018. He has substantial experience in executive leadership, strategy development, marketing/brand development and business operations, both domestically and globally, developed in his various senior executive positions with large consumer products companies. He served as president and chief executive officer of Bacardi Limited from 2012 to 2014. Prior to that, he was vice chairman of Procter & Gamble and held several senior executive positions during his 27 years with The Gillette Company. Ed is currently a director of the New York Life Insurance Company and has previously served as a member of the board of directors of Elizabeth Arden, Inc. and Time Warner Cable Inc. He is also a partner in PTW Capital, a recently formed consumer goods private equity firm.
As executive chair, Ed will work closely with Kevin to ensure a smooth and successful transition, lead the board of directors and provide input on key strategic priorities.
Brad Halverson joined the board in 2016 and is the former group president, financial products and corporate services and chief financial officer of Caterpillar Inc.
Regarding the financial outlook, the Company remains confident in its ability to achieve its financial objectives and is aligned with current fiscal year consensus estimates.
Sysco is the global leader in selling, marketing and distributing food products to restaurants, healthcare and educational facilities, lodging establishments and other customers who prepare meals away from home. Its family of products also includes equipment and supplies for the foodservice and hospitality industries. With more than 69,000 associates, the company operates more than 320 distribution facilities worldwide and serves more than 650,000 customer locations. For fiscal 2019 that ended June 29, 2019, the company generated sales of more than $60 billion. Information about our CSR program, including Sysco’s 2019 Corporate Social Responsibility Report, can be found at www.Sysco.com/csr2019report.
For more information, visit www.sysco.com or connect with Sysco on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SyscoCorporation or Twitter at https://twitter.com/Sysco. For important news and information regarding Sysco, visit the Investor Relations section of the company's Internet home page at http://investors.sysco.com/, which Sysco plans to use as a primary channel for publishing key information to its investors, some of which may contain material and previously non-public information. Investors should also follow us at www.twitter.com/SyscoStock and download the Sysco IR App, available on the iTunes App Store and the Google Play Market. In addition, investors should continue to review our news releases and filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. It is possible that the information we disclose through any of these channels of distribution could be deemed to be material information.