Former Petronas regional marketing head Jean Ler heads to Pizza Hut as CMO

QSR Brands, one of the largest quick service restaurants operator in Malaysia as well as a leading brand in the Southeast Asia region, is promoting Merrill Pereyra to chief executive officer.   Along with Pereyra’s promotion, it is also appointing Jean Ler as chief marketing officer for Pizza Hut Malaysia.

Ler will head up marketing, including brand management, innovations and consumer insights to rejuvenate the Pizza Hut brand in Malaysia. She will look to strengthen the relevance and connection to consumers by bringing them delicious products, renewed marketing communications and exciting enhanced experiences.

Ler has a marketing career that spans 20 years across various reputable local and multinational food & beverage companies. She was most recently regional head of Marketing for Petronas Lubricants AsiaPac following various positions of increased responsibility at Dutch Lady and KraftFoods/Mondelez where she successfully regained market leadership position for the Dairy and Biscuits portfolio of the respective brands.

Meanwhile, CEO Pereyra joined QSR Brands in June 2016 as COO to further shape the company’s growth story in the region. His current CEO role includes leadership of KFC and Pizza Hut in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, and Cambodia. His promotion follows the departure of Rohan St. George who helmed QSR Brands from 2013 to 2016.

With over 25 years of years of innovative and energetic leadership in the Middle East, South Pacific, Australia and Asia, Pereyra is renowned for leveraging global resources, capabilities, and relationships to promote growth of brands in new markets. He has a successful track record in setting up new businesses in six countries, in developing and implementing strategic business plans as well as fast tracking high potential employees to leadership positions.

Over the last 30 years, Pereyra has assumed senior leadership, sales and marketing positions at various leading quick service restaurants such as Domino’s, Healthy Habits and McDonald’s. In his last two roles, he was CEO of Domino’s and managing director of Healthy Habits in Australia. Prior to that, he spent 23 years at McDonald’s in four different countries.

Eric Leong has also been appointed as GM for Pizza Hut and will oversee the planning, coordinating, and managing field activities including restaurant and delivery management, quality assurance, and implementing special projects. This is in line with Pizza Hut’s drive for superior customer service and operational efficiencies to cement a solid foundation for ambitious business growth.

He brings more than 27 years of experience in the food and beverage industry, with extensive experience in sales and retail. Prior to joining Pizza Hut Malaysia, he was the managing director at Minor Food Group Singapore, which is part of Minor International, one of the largest leisure, F&B and retail companies in the Asia Pacific.

He was also supervising director and general manager at Berjaya Corporation Berhad in 2012, holding both portfolios comprising Papa John's Pizza Malaysia and Philippines, as well as Wendy's Malaysia.

Both Ler and Leong witll report to  Pereyra in his new role as CEO.

Pereyra said, “At the heart of everything we do at QSR Brands, is our consumers. This is something Eric and Jean truly understand and embody. They both bring a wealth of experience and a fresh perspective to Pizza Hut.” “I look forward to working closely with them to deliver our plans for 2017 and beyond to improve our brand value and provide Malaysians with new and exciting dining experiences that appeal to their tastes and hearts.”

This year Pizza Hut celebrates its 35th anniversary in Malaysia