Big changes are coming at the world-famous coffee-house chain Starbucks. The company announced on Monday that founder Howard Schultz officially stepped down as the company’s CEO, with former Reckitt executive Laxman Narasimhan taking over the position. Schultz will keep his seat on Starbucks’ Board of Directors.
Schultz took over as Starbucks CEO in early 2022 for his third stint at the position. He assumed the position to bring stability to the company after the departure of Kevin Johnson, but made it clear that his involvement was only temporary. Starbucks hired Narasimhan later that year with the intention of introducing him to the company’s business and preparing him to ascend to CEO at some point in 2023.
Narasimhan brings a valuable executive experience to Starbucks, having worked with a number of high-profile companies over the years. He previously served as a global chief commercial officer at PepsiCo and later as Reckitt’s chief executive officer.
“Intensive immersion into the business coupled with his extensive experience as a proven brand builder, innovator, and operator have uniquely prepared him to lead Starbucks into its next phase of growth,” said Starbucks of Narasimhan in their press release.
Starbucks stock saw a slight movement following the news, climbing to $99.79 per share on Monday. The company’s shares are up 15 percent in the past year.