Arby’s has named Rita Patel its brand chief marketing officer, overseeing brand strategy, menu, and culinary innovation as well as advertising and marketing, the quick-service chain said Thursday.
She will report to brand president Jim Taylor.
Patel previously was brand CMO of Buffalo Wild Wings, which, like Arby’s, is part of Atlanta-based Inspire Brands, which is also the parent company of Sonic Drive-In, Jimmy John’s, Dunkin’, Baskin Robbins, and Rusty Taco
At Buffalo Wild Wings Patel oversaw the launch of new menu items including the Boneless Bar Pizza, Bird Dawgs, and Saucy Chicken. Inspire also credited her for “establishing integrated ways of working between marketing, supply chain and Buffalo Wild Wings franchisees,” according to a release announcing Patel’s move to Arby’s.
“Rita has been a key driver of brand marketing and innovation strategy, and I’m thrilled to formally welcome her into this new role at Arby’s,” Taylor said in the release. “This move is a great example of how Inspire is cultivating top talent and supporting them in their career journey.”
Before joining Inspire, Patel was vice president of brand management at Target. Before that she had worked for Beam Suntory, MillerCoors, and Wrigley.
“Arby’s is a truly differentiated brand with a maverick approach to marketing, and I am excited to work alongside Jim and the entire Arby’s team to bring meaty sandwiches and delightful experiences to our guests,” Patel said. “I’ve learned so much during my time with Buffalo Wild Wings and look forward to applying those learnings in my new role.”
There are more than 3,500 Arby’s restaurants in nine countries.