New leader hired to help scale start-up reinventing the global convenience foods industry

NEW YORK, NY (Mar. 16, 2020) – O’Neill Consulting, the executive search firm scaling businesses through high impact hires, has recruited James Low as president for Rip Van Wafels, LLC (Rip Van), a start-up in the midst of re-inventing today’s most widely consumed convenient foods. Rip Van has rapidly grown by over 500% in the last three years, going from college start-up to becoming a popular snack in Silicon Valley and available in 12,000 Starbucks around the country.

Collaborating closely with Rip Van Co-Founders and Co-CEOs Rip Pruisken and Marco De Leon, O’Neill Consulting Managing Partner Kevin O’Neill and Partner Doug Rosen found an outstanding leader in Mr. Low.

With further growth on the horizon, Low’s focus will be to lead the company’s operations, P&L, brand strategy, and aggressively scale product lines across multiple channels nationwide. Priorities also include identifying new market opportunities, managing bottom-line performance, and building competitive advantage through product innovation.

“Jim is a great commercial leader who shares Rip Van’s passion for providing healthier snack alternatives,” said O’Neill. “This purpose-driven mindset combined with his ability to build award-winning brands, simplify complexity, and rally teams to deliver in entrepreneurial companies made him the right leader to take on this exciting opportunity to drive change at Rip Van.”

Low is a proven business leader with more than 20 years of experience leading, scaling, and competitively positioning consumer brands. He spent most of his career as a general manager under the Kraft Foods and Mondelēz International umbrella with full P&L responsibility for notable brands such as Schuman Cheese, Ritz, and Enjoy Life Foods.

Most recently, as executive vice president of marketing and sales for $600 million specialty cheese company Schuman Cheese, he drove double-digit growth and delivered a historically high share of voice for the company. In his previous position as general manager at Enjoy Life Foods, he drove a successful turnaround, overhauling operations while generating growth and excitement for the brand.

Low earned a master’s degree from the University of North Carolina and a bachelor’s degree with high honors from the College of William & Mary.

He was identified as the ultimate candidate through a rigorous search led by O’Neill Consulting’s Consumer Practice. The practice has significant expertise in helping start-ups scale by harnessing the power of exceptional talent.

“Rip Van has great potential and is well-positioned in a food market where ‘better for you’ alternatives continue to gain popularity with its clean, simple, and high-quality products,” said Rosen. “We’re excited to see Jim take on the company’s operations to unleash growth with his terrific food industry experience and leadership of companies big and small.”