A long-lasting marriage in the fast food industry has finally ended now that McDonald’s has shown Heinz the door for a rather peculiar reason. Heinz appointed the former Burger King CEO, Bernardo Hees, as its newest CEO – something McDonald’s did not really appreciate.
Take-over and new CEO
Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffett’s investment fund, and Brazilian 3G purchased Heinz earlier this year and one of their first acts was the appointment of a new CEO. That was Bernardo Hees, former CEO for Burger King.
McDonald’s felt that was reason enough to terminate all worldwide contracts with Heinz. “As a result of recent management changes at Heinz, we have decided to transition our business to other suppliers over time”, McDonald’s has stated. “We have spoken to Heinz and plan to work together to ensure a smooth and orderly transition.” Heinz has refused to react to the announcement of McDonald’s.
Heinz had already lost its American contracts with McDonalds in 1973 after it had failed to attain certain supply goals. That was mainly due to a bad tomato harvest, after which it decided to service supermarkets first. Now it will lose all other McDonald’s contracts, with Burger King deals still in place.
(translated by Gary Peeters)