The Kroger Co. has named Gil Phipps, currently VP of Our Brands, to VP of branding, marketing and Our Brands, effective Aug. 15.
Phipps joined the company in 2012 and led the transformation of Our Brands by evolving existing brands and introducing new brands that resonate with customers, says Kroger. “Through elevating recipes and product formulations, inserting personality into packaging and more, Mr. Phipps has increased customer loyalty and driven record Our Brands sales growth,” the company added.
“We are fundamentally changing how we market to and engage with our customers, and Gil is the perfect talent—a personality full of creativity, imagination and fun who loves food and new meal experiences—to lead the way,” said Stuart Aitken, Kroger’s group VP and CEO of 84.51°. “Kroger’s new marketing approach is more engaging, cross-functional, data-driven and customer-led in support of Restock Kroger. As we redefine the customer experience, we are using compelling marketing communications to create uplifting connections with our shoppers that earn even more of their sales, trust and loyalty.”
Kroger credits Phipps’ leadership and influence for what it says is a substantial increase of the Our Brands business.
“If Our Brands were a unique consumer packaged goods company on the Fortune 500 list, it would rank number 138,” said Kroger. “Mr. Phipps was instrumental in introducing Simple Truth, now the largest natural and organic brand in America with more than $2 billion in annual sales.”
“The retail industry is dynamic, exciting and changing, and I’m thrilled to take on this role at this very moment to transform the way Kroger connects with our customers to elevate our brand across America,” said Phipps. “We will continue to build on how we use data points powered by 84.51° to create marketing communications and experiences that are even more relevant, meaningful and personalized.”
Phipps started his grocery career in 1987 as a store director for Fresh Plus Grocery in Austin, Texas. Following that role, he became brand manager for Guiltless Gourmet before moving into brand marketing positions at both Michael Angelo’s Gourmet Foods and Hormel Foods. In 2001, Gil joined H-E-B as a brand manager before earning a series of promotions that placed him as the leader of H-E-B’s store brands program.