Coca-Cola CFO Kathy Waller leaves

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After about five years in the position
  • Praise and thanks for Waller
  • John Murphy taking over

(exechange) — Atlanta, Georgia, October 18, 2018 — Kathy Waller, finance chief of Coca-Cola, leaves her post. Her departure is made public at an early stage. As announced by The Coca-Cola Company in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Thursday, October 18, 2018, Kathy N. Waller leaves her post as chief financial officer at the beverages company after about five years in the role, effective March 15, 2019.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, the average tenure of the CFOs who departed over the past 12 months was 6.8 years, according to data compiled by exechange.

Kathy Waller’s move comes 18 months after James Quincey took over as CEO of The Coca-Cola Company.

Kathy Waller’s duties will be taken over by John Murphy, currently president of the Asia Pacific group of The Coca-Cola Company.

Kathy Waller’s move is part of a management shake-up also involving the positions of president and chief operating officer; and chief technical officer.

No reason given

In the announcement, Coca-Cola did not explicitly explain the reason for Kathy Waller’s move, leaving room for speculation.

Precise information about Kathy Waller’s future plans was not immediately available.


Coca-Cola said: “John Murphy, who currently serves as president of the company’s Asia Pacific group, will become senior vice president and deputy CFO on Jan. 1, 2019. He will be elevated to executive vice president and CFO on March 16, 2019, following the retirement of Kathy Waller.”

Coca-Cola further said: “Kathy Waller, Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and President, Enabling Services, will be retiring from the Company.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of The Coca-Cola Company since January 2018.

Chaired by Muhtar Kent

The Coca-Cola Company is chaired by Muhtar Kent.

Muhtar Kent is Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Coca-Cola Company. From 2009-2017, he served as the Company’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

CEO: James Quincey

James Quincey serves as CEO of The Coca-Cola Company. James Quincey is President and Chief Executive Officer of The Coca-Cola Company. Before becoming CEO on May 1, 2017, he led all of the company’s operating units worldwide as President and Chief Operating Officer from August 2015.

In the position of CFO since 2014

Kathy N. Waller has been the Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of The Coca-Cola Company since April 24, 2014 and has been its President of Enabling Services since May 1, 2017.

Waller currently serves as executive vice president, CFO and president of Enabling Services.

Waller is responsible for leading the Company’s global Finance organization and representing the Company to investors, lenders and rating agencies.

In addition, she has management responsibility for the Company’s Aviation Department, Global Business Transformation, Global Technical and Integrated Services.

In her role as CFO, Waller oversees M&A, Investor Relations, Tax, Treasury, Audit, Accounting and Controls, Reporting and Analysis, Real Estate and Risk Management.

As President of Enabling Services, she has responsibility for other key governance areas specifically Global Technical and Integrated Services.

The Integrated Services organization provides global operational support in areas of Financial Services, Associate Services and Supplier Services.

Waller joined The Coca-Cola Company in 1987 as a Senior Accountant in the Accounting Research Department and assumed roles of increasing responsibility, including Principal Accountant for the Northeast Europe/Africa Group, Marketing Controller for the McDonald’s Group, Vice President, Chief of Internal Audit and Vice President, Controller.

In addition to her responsibilities at The Coca-Cola Company, Waller serves on Monster Energy Company, Delta Air Lines, Inc., and the Board of Trustees of Spelman College.

She also serves on the advisory board of Catalyst, the leading nonprofit organization with a mission to expand opportunities for women and business, and the Woodruff Arts Center (WAC) Board of Directors.

Waller is actively involved with several women’s initiatives.

Waller formerly served as the founding Chair of The Coca-Cola Company’s Women’s Leadership Council and helped develop the Company’s highly successful Women in Leadership Global Program.

Prior to joining The Coca-Cola Company, Waller worked for Deloitte.

She received her bachelor’s and MBA degrees from the University of Rochester and is a CPA.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Kathy Waller’s move.

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange suggests that push-out forces may have contributed to the change.

Read the full story in the exechange report 43.2018 ($).