Wendy’s Taps Anderson as CEO

BOSTON Wendy’s International said it has named Kerrii Anderson president and CEO.

She had held those posts on an interim basis since former chief executive Jack Schuessler stepped down in April.

“I am pleased with the progress we are making on the initiatives we announced in October to revitalize the Wendy’s brand,” Anderson, 49, said in a statement. Those efforts include menu additions and design improvements for existing restaurants. To generate savings, the chain has curtailed short-term expansion plans.

Wendy’s has also restructured its marketing department, creating an innovations and strategy group that will oversee research and development, among other functions [Adweek Online, July 26]. The new group reports to evp, chief marketing officer Ian Rowden.

Wendy’s lead agency is Interpublic Group’s McCann Erickson. In May, New York-based McCann hired Benjamin Vendramin in the new position of svp, group creative director on the account.

McCann has worked on the business since winning it after a review in August 2002. IPG’s Universal McCann handles media duties.

Current campaigns are tagged, “Do what tastes right.” The client spends close to $400 million annually in U.S. measured media, including $200 million through the first half of 2006, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

Anderson has been with the company since 2000, when she joined as executive vice president and CFO. Wendy’s said it would now search for a new finance chief.

Dublin, Ohio-based Wendy’s ranks as the No. 3 hamburger chain behind McDonald’s and Burger King.

October marked the fifth consecutive month of same-store sales growth at Wendy’s, driven by promotions such as 99-cent bacon cheeseburgers and chicken sandwiches.