(Reuters) – Starbucks Corp said Thursday long-time executive Rachel Ruggeri would take over as chief financial officer next month, replacing Patrick Grismer, who will be retiring.
Ruggeri, America’s senior vice president of finance, worked with Grismer in her current position where she was responsible for the planning and performance of cafes across the region.
She started as a member of the accounting team in 2001 and was credited for launching the first Starbucks card. The loyalty program is an important part of business today, helping the coffee chain attract customers from the competition.
The announcement comes as Corporate America is pushing for diversity in its leadership roles. Women were underrepresented in senior positions in large companies and the proportion of board memberships they and minorities held has been scrutinized in recent years.
Starbucks has also made efforts to diversify its workforce, announcing in a report last year that 69% of its U.S. partners were women. Late last year, the company named Mellody Hobson as chairman of the board, the only African American woman to chair a Fortune 500 company.
Citigroup Inc named Jane Fraser chief executive officer last year, the first woman to lead a Wall Street bank.
Grismer, who has held the role for a little over two years, will be retiring next month. He will serve as an advisor to Chief Executive Officer Kevin Johnson through May 2.
The coffee chain also reiterated its forecast for the first quarter and fiscal year 2021.
Reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Adaptation by Maju Samuel