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Ken Wood, Weetabix

Ken Wood was educated at Kingswood School in Bath and read Business Studies in Birmingham.

Ken's first job was as a sales promotion assistant in the Birmingham office of HJ Heinz and moved through the company to the role of market research executive at the head office in Hayes.

Ken's desire to pursue a career in marketing led him to the Express Foods Group, which he joined as product manager on the Eden Vale brand. By the time he left ten years later, he was marketing director for the whole Eden vale portfolio including the Ski yogurt brand.

In 1986 he took on the challenging role of establishing Müller in the UK. Although established in Germany and elsewhere, Müller had no presence at all

in the UK and over the next eighteen years, Ken created a £310m brand, oversaw the building of a £60m factory in Shropshire and was recognised by The Marketing Society, which made him a Fellow and named him Marketer of the Year in 2002. By the time Ken left in 2004, Müller was the fourth largest food brand in the UK.

Ken then joined Weetabix as CEO in 2004, bringing the full benefit of his previous experience to an iconic, established brand and was charged with the responsibility of bringing the company from family ownership to a modern, international business capable of competing efficiently in today’s challenging environment.

During this tenure at Weetabix Ken has overseen the successful launch of new products including Oatibix and Chocolate Weetabix, the company’s expansion into cereal bars and the growth of its export markets and Weetabix remains the number one cereal brand in the UK, with a value of £130m.

(Judge: 2011)

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