Jeff Watters, 55, joined Ainsworth Pet Nutrition in 2009, working closely with company ownership for a decade to transform all aspects of the business model. During his tenure, the company drove category-leading top and bottom line growth and emerged as one of the top performing firms in the entire Consumer Packaged Goods sector. Ainsworth was acquired by the J.M. Smucker Company in May 2018.

As President and CEO of Ainsworth, Mr. Watters partnered with a talented Board and management team to lead a sweeping transformation of a 75 year-old, family-owned, regional Pet Products manufacturer into a disruptive national force in the large and competitive U.S. Pet category. In less than a decade, the company grew Gross Sales from approximately $200MM to $900MM and EBITDA from $8MM to $90MM.

Operational highlights included:

Mr. Watters came to Ainsworth from Del Monte Foods, where he served on the Executive Team for several years as Senior Vice President after joining in 2002 as part of a spinoff from the H.J. Heinz Company. Prior to his experience with Heinz and Del Monte, Mr. Watters worked in brand management with The Clorox Company, and sales and customer marketing with Kraft Foods Inc.

Mr. Watters earned an MBA from University of Maryland and a bachelor’s degree in Government from Hamilton College, where he played Varsity Soccer and Baseball. Mr. Watters serves on two professional boards and is a three-term elected Director on the Quaker Valley School Board in Sewickley, PA, where he resides with his wife and three children.

Jeff Watters has been a guest on 1 episode.