Campbell Names Possible CEO Successor Amid Deep Sales Slump

(Bloomberg) -- Campbell Soup Co., the packaged-food giant that’s struggling to break out of a three-year sales slump, named industry veteran Luca Mignini as chief operating officer, putting him in line for the top job.

Mignini, 55, joined Campbell in 2013 and currently runs the snacks unit, which makes Pepperidge Farm cookies and Goldfish crackers. Snacks have become a key focus for Campbell to drive growth as sales of canned soup declines, with the company agreeing last year to pay $4.9 billion for Snyder’s-Lance and its popular pretzels and potato chips.

Campbell does not currently have an operations chief, and the promotion puts Mignini in line to take over from Denise Morrison, 64, who has been running the company since 2011. The Camden, New Jersey-based company said Mignini will oversee soup operations and other areas while continuing to manage the newly expanded snacks unit.

The company also announced it is restructuring its organization to “capitalize on the rapidly changing food-industry landscape.” As part of the overhaul, Campbell said it will create a new “accelerator unit” that will focus on areas such as e-commerce and faster-growing segments of the market.

Campbell shares have fallen almost 10 percent this year as it contends with shifting consumer preferences.

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