Jul 09, 2014 • By

A peek behind the scenes at Investor Day

Before my trip to the New York Stock Exchange for our Investor Day yesterday, I watched as many movies as possible that had anything to do with Wall Street. I wanted to get a sense for what it would be like. And I have to say, I wasn’t let down.


The atmosphere inside the historic room was electric as our General Mills group, led by Chairman and CEO Ken Powell, stepped onto the trading floor to take in the scene, before we all walked up a back hallway staircase to ring the opening bell.


The room, which feels smaller than it appears on television or in the movies, is nestled inside the building, which dates back to 1903. But all the modern monitors and TV cameras can temporarily make you forget you are standing inside such an historic space.


I wasn’t the only first-time visitor from the General Mills team. Jeff Harmening, executive vice president and chief operating officer for U.S. Retail, and Bethany Quam, vice president and president of Convenience and Foodservice, also were there for the first time.

Here’s what Jeff had to say about what it felt like to ring the opening bell.


Just after the market opened, I spoke with Jeff on the trading floor about the company’s plans for growth in the new fiscal year and what he’s excited about.

I also spoke with Bethany, about the lineup of innovative new products for away-from-home channels.

“Convenience and Foodservice has a great lineup of innovative products for the K12 channel, where we’re focusing on better-for-you snacking for kids, and great innovation in our convenience channel,” she said. “We’re bringing some new chips under the Totino’s brand and continuing to expand our Pillsbury ready-to-eat offering as well.

Bethany also talked about the importance of understanding the convenience store consumer – and those new chips.

For more details on what all of our executives presented yesterday to investors, read “Investor Day focuses on our consumers.”


Outside the exchange, the Yoplait Greek Taste-Off also made a stop on Wall Street yesterday. They had a tent set up, complete with yogurt cup balloons, to give those who work inside, and visitors, a chance to take a side-by-side taste test between Yoplait Greek blueberry yogurt and Chobani Greek blueberry fruit on the bottom.


The team even handed out samples of our Yoplait Greek yogurt on the trading floor before the opening bell.

It was a fun and busy day, one I will not soon forget. I’m already looking forward to my next trip to Wall Street.