Swire Coca-Cola USA, based in Draper, has announced that Rob Gehring has been named president and CEO of the soft drink distributor. He will replace Jack Pelo, Swire’s president and CEO for the past 24 years, who will retire at the end of this year.
Gehring joined Swire in 2018 and has since played an integral role in enhancing the culture of innovation and customer service at the company, Swire said in a release. Gehring is a veteran in the Coca-Cola system and former global chief sales officer for The Hershey Co. At Coca-Cola, Gehring served as president of the Walmart Global Team leading the team managing the relationship with Walmart and Sam’s Club and the respective Coca-Cola bottlers in 28 countries. Gehring has held several other roles within the Coca-Cola system including vice president of sales in the Canadian and western U.S. business units.
“I am humbled and honored to be entrusted with the leadership of Swire Coca-Cola, USA, the talented people who work here, the marketplace opportunities before us, and the legacy that Jack Pelo will leave in his wake as he retires,” said Gehring. “Jack is one of the most respected leaders in the beverage industry and an all-around great human being. No one can replace him, but I am grateful for his mentorship and partnership as I take on the responsibility of leading this company into the next decade.”
Under Pelo’s leadership, Swire Coca-Cola, USA has grown to become a top data-driven manufacturer, distributor and seller of Coca-Cola, Dr Pepper, Monster Energy and Body Armor products in the United States. When Pelo became president and CEO in 1996, Swire employed close to 1,600 people in the Intermountain West. Now the company has 7,200 employees in 13 states.
“It has been my privilege to lead this company through tremendous growth and success. We have accomplished so much including our partnership with the Salt Lake City Olympic Games in 2002, quadrupling our size and navigating all the challenges of 2020,” said Pelo. “At the heart of this success has been our people. We hire and develop talented people, who are central to our mission of being the best employer, the best business partner and the best corporate citizen wherever we do business. I’d like to congratulate Rob on his succession. He is driven, innovative and passionate and I am excited for him to take our company to the next level of success.”
Swire Coca-Cola, USA is a part of Swire Coca-Cola Limited, the fifth-largest bottling partner of the Coca-Cola Co. by global volume. Swire Coca-Cola Limited itself is part of Swire Pacific Limited, a Hong Kong-based international conglomerate with a diversified portfolio of market-leading businesses.