- Former Kroger vice president of e-commerce Bill Bennett will be joining Innovative Food Holdings as its new CEO, effective Feb. 28, IVFH announced in a press release last week.
- Bennett will replace current CEO Sam Klepfish and assume a seat on IVFH’s board of director. Klepfish will remain the food-focused e-commerce software company’s chairman of the board.
- In a Friday LinkedIn post, Bennett announced his career change, explaining his desire to shift from guiding “big blue-chip companies” to leading a “small public company.”
Bennett comes to IVFH with nearly two decades of experience in the retail industry. During his three-plus years with Kroger, he oversaw the company’s $10 billion e-commerce business and developed market strategy across marketing, merchandising, supply chain, product management, technology and analytics, per the announcement.
Prior to Kroger, Bennett worked with Walmart for seven years and held numerous positions, including senior manager for finance and strategy, director of pricing strategy, senior director of merchandising strategy and analytics, and vice president of merchandise operations, according to his LinkedIn profile. Before joining Walmart, Bennett headed the pricing strategy group at S.C. Johnson and served in multiple leadership roles at General Mills.
“Attracting an executive of Bill’s caliber, expertise, and background validates the power and the future of the IVFH platform,” Jeff Gramm of Bandera Partners, an independent board member of IVFH, said in a statement. “Bill’s passion, energy, and drive to succeed makes me confident that IVFH will thrive under his guidance. We look forward to working with Bill as he focuses on creating significant shareholder value.”
IVFH serves foodservice business-to-business customers and runs e-commerce platforms including iGourmet.com, Mouth.com, and Plantbelly.com. Under Klepfish, who joined IVFH in 2006, the company grew from having less than $6 million in revenue to become to having over $77 million in twelve-month trailing revenues, according to the announcement.
“As I shift my focus to new entrepreneurial and investment projects, I believe this is the optimal time to transition to a new CEO who can take the Company to the next level by further leveraging the platform we have built,” Klepfish said in a statement.