May 19, 2020

Extreme Pita is Extremely Nutritious

KUBRA
Tushar Chandgothia
Bizclik Editor
2 min
Extreme Pita is Extremely Nutritious

 

Extreme Pita is launching six new menu items specifically designed to meet the nutrient criteria of Heart and Stroke Foundation’s Health Check program. This makes Extreme Pita the first of Canadian national fast food chains to meet these requirements.

With over 265 Extreme Pita locations across North America, the Mississauga-based franchise is setting a new standard for the fast food industry by offering healthy options and providing nutritional information. 

New menu items include two pitas for adults and four for children. These items meet the rigorous Health Check standards such as criteria on sodium and fat levels in food. This paired with displaying nutrition and calorie data on its menus is putting Extreme Pita on the healthy nutrition map.

“Extreme Pita has always stood for inspired healthy eating and our new menu items set a whole new standard of transparency to help customers make informed decisions,” said Alex Rechichi, CEO and co-founder of Extreme Brandz, in a statement. “Maintaining good health is a top priority for Canadians. It’s time that the fast-food industry keeps up with what is happening in food labelling by revealing and detailing calories and sodium percentages clearly on their menus. I challenge all QSRs in Canada to follow suit—if these restaurant chains have nothing to hide, they shouldn’t have a problem with fully disclosing all factors in its menu.”

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To meet Heath Check standards, Extreme Pita worked closely with vendors and the Heart and Stroke Foundation over the past year. This ensured that new menu items would be guaranteed to meet all requirements without compromising pita taste. Quaker Donates Two Million Bowls of Oatmeal to Help Hungry Canadians

“The Heart and Stroke Foundation is thrilled to have Extreme Pita join the Health Check program, offering healthy pita sandwiches on both its adult and kids menus,” says Bobbe Wood, CEO, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, in a statement. “And we applaud them for going further and providing nutrition information for all of their offerings giving Canadians the information they need to make informed choices.”

The Health Check program was created with the intention to help Canadians make healthy food choices. Health Check pitas are now available at all Extreme Pita restaurants. 
 

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Jun 13, 2021

Marketing matters: from IBM to Kyndryl

CMO
Kyndryl
IBM
Leadership
Kate Birch
5 min
Former CMO for IBM Americas Maria Bartolome Winans was recently named CMO for Kyndryl. Maria talks about her new role and her leadership style

Former Chief Marketing Officer for IBM Americas, and an IBM veteran of more than 25 years, Maria Bartolome Winans was recently named CMO for Kyndryl.

Prior to joining Kyndryl as Chief Marketing Officer, Maria had a 25-year career at IBM, most recently as the tech giant’s CMO where she oversaw all marketing professionals and activities across North America, Canada and Latin America. She has held senior global marketing positions in a variety of disciplines and business units across IBM, most notably strategic initiatives in Smarter Cities and Watson Customer Engagement, as well as leading teams in services, business analytics, and mobile and industry solutions. She is known for her work with teams to leverage data, analytics and cloud technologies to build deeper engagements with customers and partners.

With a passion for marketing, business and people, and a recognized expert in data-driven marketing and brand engagement, Maria talks to Business Chief about her new role, her leadership style and what success means to her.

You've recently moved from IBM to Kyndryl, joining as CMO. Tell us about this exciting new role?

I’m Chief Marketing Officer for Kyndryl, the independent company that will be created following the separation from IBM of its Managed Infrastructure Services business, expected to occur by the end of 2021. My role is to plan, develop, and execute Kyndryl's marketing and advertising initiatives. This includes building a company culture and brand identity on which we base our marketing and advertising strategy.

We have an amazing opportunity ahead at Kyndryl to create a company brand that will stand apart in the market by leading with our people first. Once we are an independent company, each Kyndryl employee will advance the vital systems that power human progress. Our people are devoted, restless, empathetic, and anticipatory – key qualities needed as we build on existing customer relationships and cultivate new ones. Our people are at the heart of this business and I am deeply hopeful and excited for our future.

What experiences have helped prepare you for this new opportunity?

I’ve had a very rich and diverse career history at IBM that has lasted 25+ years. I started out in sales but landed explored opportunities at IBM in different roles, business units, geographies, and functions. Marketing and business are my passions and I landed on Marketing because it allowed me to utilize both my left and right brain, bringing together art and science. In college, I was no tonly a business major, but an art major. I love marketing because I can leverage my extensive knowledge of business, while also being able to think openly and creatively.

The opportunities I was given during my time at IBM and my natural curiosity have led me to the path I’m on now and there’s no better next career step than a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity to help launch a company. The core of my role at Kyndryl is to create a culture centered on our people and growing up in my career at IBM has allowed me to see first-hand how to prioritize people and ensure they are at the heart of progress in everything Kyndryl will do.

How would you describe your leadership style?

I believe that people aren't your greatest assets, they are your only assets. My platform and background for leadership has always been grounded in authenticity to who I am and centered on diversity and inclusion. I immigrated to the US from Chile when I was 10 years old and so I know the power and beauty that comes from leaning into what makes you different from other people, and that's what I want every person in my marketing organization to feel – the value in bringing their most authentic self to work every day. The way our employees feel when they show up for themselves authentically is how they will also show up for our customers, and strong relationships drive growth.

I think this is especially true in light of a world forever changed by the pandemic. Living through such an unprecedented time has reinforced that we are all humans. We can't lead or care for one another without empathy and I think leaders everywhere have been reminded of this.

What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?

When I was growing up as an immigrant in North Carolina, I often wanted to be just like everyone else. But my mother always told me: Be unique, be memorable – you have an authentic view and experience of the world that no one else will ever have, so don't try to be anyone else but you.

What does success look like to you?

I think the concept of success is multi-faceted. From a career perspective, being in a job where you're respected and appreciated, and where you can see how your contributions are providing value by motivating your teams to be better – that's success! From a personal perspective, there is no greater accomplishment than investing in the next generation. I love mentoring younger professionals – they are the future. I want my legacy as a leader to include providing value in work culture, but also in leaving a personal impact on the lives of professionals who will carry the workforce forward. Finding a position in life with a job and company that offers me a chance at all of that is what success looks like to me.

What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?

I've always been a naturally curious person and it's easy for me to over-commit to projects that pique my interest. I've learned over years of practice how to manage that, so to my younger self I’d say… prioritize the things that are most important, and then become amazing at those things.

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