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Ken Willis, '76 Marketing

Ken WillisTitle: Principal
Company: Anewda, LLC
Location: Alpharetta, GA

A results proven sales, marketing and general management executive with PEPSICO, QUAKER and entrepreneurial companies, Ken has driven breakthrough revenue and profit growth by;

  • Re-strategizing Underperforming Business Models/Practices
  • Developing Exceptional People and Teams
  • Building Excellent Customer Relationships and Execution Processes

Having led teams in multiple channels (grocery, warehouse/mass merch, convenience, food service, drug) across DSD and warehouse disciplines, Ken has directed business segments up to $2B in topline revenue while driving top 5 percentile share and profit growth.  Representative CPG customers have included Walmart, Kroger, Publix, Safeway, K-Mart, 7/11 and Eckerd’s/Rite Aid.  As an entrepreneur, significant education software penetration levels were realized within some of the largest/most challenging school districts including Los Angeles, San Diego, Dade, Broward and Duval counties.

Ken's value proposition is about breakthrough results through strong analytics, vision/innovation, customer sensitivity and people leadership. This winning formula consistently produces cutting edge insights, resourceful business plans and flawless execution. Correspondingly, Ken utilizes an overall business evaluation framework (Customer, Strategy, People, Systems, and Values), to identify and correct organizational bottlenecks that hinder total plan optimization.

  • As President/CEO Test Tools ($1MM), led the acquisition, business plan re-launch and Sales/ Marketing efforts of an Education Software Company ultimately posting 200% increases in customer penetration and 300% growth in direct to consumer purchases. Directed leadership team including Chief Development Officer, Director of Marketing/Support Systems, IT Manager and 5 Sales Reps.  Winning strategies included transition to more efficient web-based platform, creation of “white space” product offerings (Spanish), launching Direct-to-Consumer Portal, 75% cost reductions through web-based selling efforts and signing Strategic Alliance Partner.  
  • As VP Change Leadership ($9B), led the strategicdevelopment, re-design and implementation of new Quaker Tropicana Gatoradeselling force (in conjunction with QTG/Pepsico/Frito Lay customer teams) thusdriving unprecedented revenue and profit growth ($712MM / $248MM). Matrixreporting relationship across 3 Divisions/VP's.
  • As VP/GM South Region ($1.8B), managed 6 Customer Development Directors responsible for major grocery, C-Store, drug and DSD customers (350 ppl). Additional reports included Retail Managers (2), Director Business Development, Finance Director, Supply Chain Manager and Human Resource Manager. 
    • Led organizational transformation and reversal of business declines resulting in 2 year $300MM revenue and $105MM profit growth (2nd best in US despite significant customer closings).
  • As Director/GM Pacific Region ($550MM), led redesign and implementation of a redefined selling organization that delivered enhanced Category Management, Joint Business Planning, Database Marketing and Efficient Transaction Services to Western U.S. Customers (Safeway, Kroger, Albertsons, etc.).  Managed 3 Customer Development Directors, Customer Marketing Director (Ethnic Marketing, Marketing Research) Retail Manager and Finance Manager (150 ppl).
    • Significantly exceeded very aggressive Revenue and TNDPC (profit) plan posting #1 Performing Unit two years consecutively.

 Education

  • Northwestern University
    Kellogg Graduate School of Management
    MBA (1998)
  •  Florida State University
    BS, Marketing (1976)

 Professional Development

  • Harvard Business School Leadership Seminar
  • Darden Business School (University of Virginia) Executive Leadership Seminar
  • University of Southern California Management Seminar


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