Merrick Pet Care Appoints CEO
Merrick Pet Care, Inc. in Amarillo, Texas, has appointed accomplished marketing executive and current president Timothy “Tim” W. Simonds as CEO to lead the company through its next phase of growth.
Under the leadership of former CEO, Greg Shearson, Merrick grew from a niche brand in 2011 to become the No. 3 natural brand in the pet specialty retail channel today, said company officials. Shearson, and his leadership team, helped Merrick become one of the fastest-growing businesses in the U.S. in recent years, and is expected to surpass $500 million in sales for 2018, officials added.
Shearson led the company through two key phases of growth. Together with private equity firm Swander Pace Capital, he set out to build on the vision of the company’s founder, Garth Merrick, and make the most wholesome and nutritious food that pets deserve. After four years of significant growth, he sold the company to Nestlé Purina in 2015 and the stand-alone business unit continues to outperform the pet food category.
“There couldn’t be a better time for a collaborative and results-driven leader like Tim to bring new energy and focus to this business,” Shearson said. “The natural and organic pet care industry has become fiercely competitive in recent years, and Tim’s ability to inspire others and build advocacy for our brands will help continue to win the hearts and minds of the pet specialty shopper.”
Simonds brings more than 27 years of experience in brand strategy and consumer marketing. He started with Merrick in 2016 as vice president of marketing and was appointed president in March 2018. Prior to Merrick, Simonds was chief marketing and engagement officer at the Kellogg School of Management and held various senior leadership roles at GE and United Airlines. Simonds started his career in brand management and sales the Procter & Gamble Co.