KFC U.S. President Leaves To Become CEO of Brinker Int’l.

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Brinker Int'l. names Kevin Hochman CEO of the company, effective June 6. Hochman also will become president of Chili's Grill and Bar and a member of the board of directors. Courtesy of Brinker Int'l.

KFC U.S. President Kevin Hochman is stepping down after five years of helming the Yum Brands concept to become CEO of Brinker Int’l.

Hochman will succeed Brinker Int’l. CEO Wyman Roberts, who is retiring. Hochman will assume the roles of CEO of Brinker Int’l., president of Chili’s Grill and Bar and member of the board of directors, effective June 6. Roberts will continue to serve in an advisory role for 12 months.

“After an extended search for a successor, the board is pleased to have Kevin serve as Brinker’s next CEO,” says Joe DePinto, board chairman, in a press release. “Kevin is a talented leader and innovative thinker with strategic vision, passion and a successful track record of building brands. We are confident he will create shareholder value and maintain the company’s culture as we work to bring Chili’s, Maggiano’s and our virtual brands to even more guests.”

Hochman served as president and chief concept officer of KFC U.S. since March 2017 and concurrently served as president of Pizza Hut U.S. from December 2019 to January 2022. He was chief marketing officer of KFC U.S. from January 2014 to February 2017. Before joining Yum Brands, he worked at Procter and Gamble for more than 18 years in various brand management and marketing roles.

As Brinker Int’l. announced its new CEO, Yum Brands announced a succession plan following Hochman’s departure. Yum Brands says Dyke Shipp, KFC division president, will assume direct management responsibilities in the interim until a new president of KFC U.S. is appointed.

“I want to thank Kevin for his leadership, his bold and creative thinking and his unwavering focus on keeping the iconic KFC brand culturally relevant for consumers,” says Sabir Sami, KFC division CEO, in a press release. “As Kevin moves on to another opportunity, we’re thankful for the strong and experienced leadership team at KFC U.S. Dyke is an accomplished executive with a strong track record of elevating KFC’s unique and distinctive culture, shaping leaders around the world and driving an ambitious global development agenda.”

Brinker Int’l. is the parent company to Chili’s Grill and Bar, Maggiano’s Little Italy and the virtual brand It’s Just Wings and Maggiano’s Italian Classics. The company operates or franchises over 1,600 restaurants.

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