Hugh Johnston’s appointment as Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) has been officially announced by Robert A. Iger, the Chief Executive Officer. Johnston, who currently holds the position of Vice Chairman and Chief Financial Officer at PepsiCo, is set to assume his new role on December 4. With a distinguished 34-year career at PepsiCo, Johnston has accumulated a wealth of experience and has held various leadership positions within the multinational food and beverage conglomerate.
As the incoming Chief Financial Officer of Disney, Johnston will report directly to Iger and will take charge of overseeing the company’s global finance department. This portfolio includes corporate real estate, corporate strategy and business development, enterprise controllership, enterprise technology, financial planning and analysis, global product and labor standards, global security, investor relations, risk management, tax, and treasury.
Iger also extended his gratitude to Kevin Lansberry, who temporarily assumed the CFO role earlier in the year, for providing steady leadership and valuable guidance to the executive management team. Lansberry will return to his position as CFO of Disney Experiences segment.
Johnston expressed his enthusiasm for joining Disney and working with the management team led by Bob Iger. He highlighted Disney’s storied history, beloved brands, and strong financial foundation as factors that make it an exceptional and unique company. He shares Iger’s optimism for Disney’s future and is excited to be part of this moment of opportunity and possibility.
Johnston’s career at PepsiCo began in 1987, and he held a range of positions, including Executive Vice President, Global Operations, President, Pepsi-Cola North America, Senior Vice President, Transformation, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, PepsiCo Beverages and Foods, and Senior Vice President, Mergers and Acquisitions, among others. He also served as Vice President, Retail at Merck & Co. from 1999 until 2002, when he returned to PepsiCo.
In 2010, Johnston was named CFO of PepsiCo, and in this role, he provided strategic financial leadership, ensuring that the company’s strategy generated value for shareholders. He was responsible for communicating PepsiCo’s strategies and performance to investors and implementing financial processes and controls to support the company’s growth and return on investment objectives.
Currently, Johnston is a board member and chair of the audit committee for Microsoft Corp. and HCA Healthcare. He also serves as a director for the Peterson Institute for International Economics, a prominent global economic think tank.
Hugh Johnston holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Syracuse University and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago.