Subway has named former Burger King chief John Chidsey as its new CEO, effective Monday.
The appointment puts a longtime veteran of franchising in charge of the all-franchised sandwich chain. Strained relations with its owner-operators have been a major problem for the brand, which has been struggling since the death of co-founder and longtime CEO Fred DeLuca in 2015 to recover the momentum that made it one of the industry’s standout successes during the first part of the century.
Chidsey assumes the CEO’s duties from Trevor Haynes, who has been acting as chief executive since Suzanne Greco, DeLuca’s sister, surrendered the post in May 2018. Haynes will now serve as president of Subway’s North American operations, the franchisor said.
Chidsey joined Burger King in 2004, rising to CEO in 2006 after serving as CFO and president. He stepped down in 2011, about five months after the brand was acquired by Brazilian private-equity firm 3G Capital.
Earlier, he served as CEO for each of two divisions of Cendant Corp., the parent of several franchised and travel-related businesses. Chidsey headed Cendant’s rental car division, which included Avis and Budget, and its retail financial services operation, Jackson Hewitt Tax Preparation Services.
A lawyer by education, Chidsey has also served in international financial positions for PepsiCo.
"His diverse business background and global food and beverage expertise will help us continue the evolution of the Subway brand," the chain said in announcing Chidsey's appointment.