Mars Presidents
(L to R) Mars President Paul Michaels, who plans to retire Dec. 31, 2014, and Grant Reid, Mars' current global president of Mars Chocolate, who will take over as Mars president Jan 2, 2015. 

For the first time since 2004, Mars Inc. will have a new president — and he comes into the role after serving in the company’s sweet spot.

Grant Reid, a 26-year veteran of Mars has been named to the role by the company’s board of directors, as the new company president. Reid currently works as global president of Mars Chocolate, one of Mars' biggest business segments, and leads more than 17,000 associates.

He’s slated to take over as president starting Jan. 2, 2015 after the current president Paul Michaels retires Dec. 31, 2014. Michaels has been Mars’ president since 2004.  

"In his almost 11 years at the helm of Mars, Inc., Paul has overseen a period of outstanding business performance and tremendous achievement,” says Victoria Mars, chairman of Mars’ board of directors. “It's because of his focus on nurturing leaders who are both talented and principled that we have such a strong internal successor in the business.”

Reid is slated to step in as co-office of the president July 2, and he’ll then have the time to partner with Paul on transition plans before taking on the role of president formally in January 2015.  

"I'm grateful to the board of directors for giving me this opportunity and proud to have been chosen as the next president of Mars, Inc.” Reid says.

He add that the company has always encouraged development and growth for associates and his accomplishments are “living proof of that fact.”

"I believe in the Mars culture, I love the Mars brands and I know that we have the best associates in the world,” Reid says. “ We have a truly exciting future and I'm honored to lead the organization into that future."

Grant's diverse experience across the business gives him both historical perspective and a broad view of the way Mars operates. He has worked across multiple functions including sales, marketing, commercial, manufacturing and general management as well as several Mars business segments.

In his current role as global president of Mars Chocolate, he oversees some of the company’s best-loved brands, including M&M’S, SNICKERS, DOVE, GALAXY and TWIX.

In the last five years, Reid has successfully led the Chocolate business to deliver consistent growth in mature and emerging markets, and built an excellent and diverse team of leaders.

He’s been a champion of industry efforts to collaborate on the issue of cocoa sustainability.

In particular, he has grown the Mars' Sustainable Cocoa Initiative, which puts “farmers first” in its efforts to increase sustainable farming practices and crop productivity, which in turn helps farmers improve their wages and their ability to give their families a chance for better opportunities for education and a more prosperous future.

Grant has an honors degree in Management Economics, as well as a Certificate in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing.