Gopuff taps Panera exec as new CFO

Dive Brief:

  • Gopuff has hired Ted Stedem, former CFO of Panera Brands, as its new CFO, effective Aug. 22, according to an email sent to Restaurant Dive. Panera announced Stedem’s replacement, Konrad Meyer, on Aug. 12.
  • Gopuff is also promoting Sanjay Shah, SVP of North America fulfillment, to SVP of North America operations.
  • These executive changes come at the heels of a tumultuous past few months for Gopuff, in which it laid off over a thousand employees between April and July.

Dive Insight:

During its layoffs in July, Gopuff said it needed to “drive operational efficiencies.” Hiring Stedem, who brings more than two decades of leadership experience in public and private markets at some of the world’s largest restaurant and retail brands, could very well be a move to do just that.

Before joining Panera in 2019, Stedem spent two years as SVP of global head of business planning and financial operations at WeWork. Prior to WeWork, Stedem held various executive positions, including managing director and general manager of KFC Asia. He also was CFO for Yum China, where he helped the business become an independent, publicly traded company with 7,600 restaurants and $7 billion in revenue.

In an internal memo to employees, Gopuff’s co-CEOs Rafael Ilishayev and Yakir Gola said Stedem’s leadership and expertise in finance and operations will be invaluable as the company enters its next phase.

In a statement, Stedem said, “As the leader in instant commerce with a proven model, well-established infrastructure, technology and local presence, Gopuff is powering the future of delivery. I have long been impressed by the company’s leadership, fiscal discipline and strategic growth trajectory. I am optimistic about Gopuff’s future and look forward to being a part of what’s next.”

This isn’t the first time Gopuff have hired a former restaurant executive. In March 2021, the company hired Amelia Ribaformer chief brand officer for Pizza Hut UK and Europe, as vice president of its Kitchen prepared food division. Gopuff officially launched its Kitchen division last summer and looks to make it a core part of its offering moving forward.

In addition to hiring Stedem, Gopuff is elevating Shah, who brings additional operational expertise. Before joining Gopuff in October 2021huh was COO of Beyond Meat. He’s also held roles as SVP of global energy at Tesla, reporting directly to Elon Musk, and at Amazon as VP of North America customer fulfillment.

Amid a tight labor market, Gopuff has announced multiple investments this year to keep workers engaged and entice new hires to join. In early August, the company launched Instant Cash Out for its US delivery workers, allowing them to receive their earnings balance at any time. Before that, the company launched the Gopuff Driver app and also partnered with retail technology company Upside to offer delivery partners promotions at more than 50,000 businesses, including cash back opportunities at gas stations, restaurants and grocery stores.

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