Brinker International, Inc. announced that George Felix will join the company as Chief Marketing Officer to provide overall vision, leadership, strategy and execution of all marketing programs and initiatives for Chili’s Grill & Bar. With a reputation for building and repositioning brands, Felix has a track record of success taking legacy brands and making them exciting again. His marketing career has taken him from Procter & Gamble to Yum! Brands to Tinder.
During his time at P&G, Felix focused on brand management, mobile strategy and innovation, and led award-winning advertising campaigns, including the famous “Smell Like a Man” brand relaunch for Old Spice. While at Yum! Brands, he served as Director of Marketing for KFC and CMO for Pizza Hut, where he helped lead and launch campaigns – including KFC’s “Return of Colonel Sanders” and Pizza Hut’s “Newstalgia” campaign. Both campaigns modernized the brands and drove sustained sales growth. Felix most recently was CMO at Tinder, where he led the development of the company’s new global brand positioning and redefined its mission statement.
“George has a track record of driving sales quickly and rebuilding big brands over time,” says Kevin Hochman, President and CEO of Brinker. “He is also a servant leader with a focus on growing people – which makes him a perfect fit for our Chili’s culture. I am confident George will bring a fresh perspective to serving our Guests and our Team Members.”
Felix will begin his new role on Thursday, July 21.
“Chili’s is such an iconic brand that’s not only culturally relevant, but also known for its irreverent approach to advertising and marketing,” Felix says. “I’m excited to lean on my brand positioning and advertising experience to find new opportunities for building momentum and accelerating growth for this great brand.”
In 2018, Ad Age named Felix its “Brand Marketer of the Year” and in 2016 he made the outlet’s 40 Under 40 list. During his career, he has been at the helm of several award-winning campaigns including 14 Cannes Lions, four Effies and an Emmy for Best Commercial.
During Felix’s tenure with the brand, KFC was also named to Ad Age’s 2016 Marketer A-List as one of the top 10 brands of the year.