Ex-Subway Marketer Joins Cosi as CMO

CHICAGO Quick-service restaurant chain Cosi has confirmed hiring former Subway executive Chris Carroll as its chief marketing officer, a new position.

Carroll, 49, is tasked with helping Cosi grow from 100 restaurants to 800 in the next four years, the company said.

“Joining Cosi’s executive team is the perfect opportunity for me,” Carroll said in a statement. “I’m impressed with how well Cosi knows its upscale guests, and I look forward to bringing my broad marketing experience to bear on the entire Cosi brand.”

In addition to his six-year tenure as worldwide marketing director at Subway, Carroll has served as vice president of advertising, sales and promotion at Burger King. He has also worked at agencies on accounts such as Pizza Hut and McDonald’s.

While Subway experienced considerable growth during his tenure, and he oversaw the national introduction of pitchman Jared Fogle, his final two years saw short-lived relationships with respected creative agencies.

First, he worked with Publicis Groupe’s Fallon in Minneapolis in 2004 on the derided “It’s OK, I had Subway.” When Fallon and Subway parted after less than a year, Carroll enlisted Omnicom Group’s Goodby Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco. That relationship also quickly fizzled, and the $400 million-plus business in July 2005 was consolidated at independent roster shop MMB in Boston.

Carroll left Subway last September and he was succeeded by former McCann Erickson executive Tony Pace in January.

Deerfield, Ill.-based Cosi operates 100 restaurants in 16 states and had no measurable media spending last year, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Cosi’s most recent ad agency relationships could not immediately be determined.