Chicago — Mars Wrigley appoints Cathryn Sleight to the newly expanded role of Global Chief Growth Officer, a position where she will lead the company’s global marketing, innovation, insights and analytics along with the business development agenda for the segment.
Sleight, currently serving as president of global business development and reporting to Mars Wrigley Global President Andrew Clarke, broadens her responsibilities to assume end-to-end responsibility for global category growth, according to the company. The transition comes upon Berta de Pablos Barbier’s decision to step down from her current role as global chief growth officer to pursue an international move back home with her family after a 18-year career with the company.
“I’m delighted to expand Cathryn’s remit and bring together the critical core capabilities required to deliver category growth. She will continue to drive excellence in how we utilize our global reach, iconic brands and brilliant Associates to build the category and evolve how brands connect with consumers,” says Andrew Clarke, global president of Mars Wrigley. “We will miss Berta’s energy and authentic leadership. She and her team have made important contributions to Mars Wrigley’s ambition to create the future of treating and snacking, galvanizing the Marketing function by bringing growth levers and capabilities together with innovation and insights.”
Sleight notes: “I was first attracted to Mars as a purpose-led, principles-driven business. Working with some of the world’s biggest and most-loved brands that I’ve grown up with, with such a talented team of Associates and partners is a huge privilege. Treating and snacking is a vibrant and expansive category with tremendous growth potential. The opportunity to strengthen the legacy of our brands, continuing to make them relevant for today’s occasions and inspire more smiles across the globe is a great brief.”
Since joining the company in August 2019, Sleight has been a member of the Mars Wrigley Leadership Team, working on the business development and reinvention strategy. Prior to joining Mars, she had a 30-plus year marketing career at major multinational food and beverage companies including The Coca-Cola Co. and Unilever.
To ensure a smooth transition, the company reports de Pablos will leave Mars Wrigley at the end of September after a career which began as an R&D intern, and spanned four continents, six countries and various functional and business leadership positions including her most recent role as Global Chief Growth Officer.
Reflecting on nearly two decades with Mars, de Pablos adds: “Mars has been an incredible home for me to build my career doing the work I love to build brands and cultivate talent across a global business. As a family-owned company that has supported my development across myriad roles and locations, Mars fully understood my decision to put my family at the center of my next best move. I leave with gratitude for the fantastic partners, mentors and Associates I’ve found here, and pride for the impact we’ve made together.”