THIS Appoints Former Ella’s Kitchen CEO Mark Cuddigan to Lead Company into Next Chapter

UK alt meat producer THIS has appointed Mark Cuddigan, the former CEO of organic baby and toddler food brand Ella’s Kitchen, as its new CEO.

After joining Ella’s Kitchen in 2011, Cuddigan increased the company’s revenue from £41 million to £100 million. He is also involved in the B Corp movement, having sat on its B Lab Board for almost five years and gaining B Corp accreditation for Ella’s Kitchen in 2016 (THIS is also a B Corp, and became the first British alt meat brand to be certified in 2022).

THIS founders Andy Shovel and Pete Sharman — who are currently serving as co-CEOs — will step down on February 19. They will remain involved in the business at Board level, and will support Cuddigan and the senior team. Since founding the company in 2019, Shovel and Sharman have grown it to become the largest independent brand in the alt meat category, with an annualised revenue of around £22 million last year.

“We couldn’t be more excited to welcome Mark into the business!” said Shovel. “Pete and I have been semi-decent early-stage CEOs (mostly!), but we wanted to invite a seasoned pro to lead our baby from here. We’re absolutely thrilled to have someone with such a rich experience within FMCG, genuine passion for our mission, and an exceptional track record of driving sustainable growth through an engaged and empowered team, leading the business into the next chapter on the THIS™ journey.”


“Impressive growth journey”

The announcement comes just a month after THIS rolled out two new retail products — THIS Isn’t Chicken Breast and frozen THIS Isn’t Beef Mince — for Veganuary. The company also recently partnered with brewery and pub chain BrewDog to launch what are claimed to be Europe’s first skin-on vegan chicken wings.

In 2023, THIS received investment from television broadcaster ITV, leading to a highly successful TV advertisement. The company also secured its first international listing last year, launching at Albert Heijn stores in the Netherlands.

“I am delighted to have been appointed to lead THIS™ into a new chapter,” said Cuddigan. “It’s a business on an impressive growth journey, with a strong brand, talented team, and a reputation as a leader in the food industry. I will be very focused on working with the team to continue to deliver category-leading growth, as we serve the millions of people across Europe who eat our products every day. One of the vital ways of combating global warming is transitioning to a plant-based diet and we will have a crucial role in making this transition a great experience for consumers.”

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