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Ex CEO, McDonald’s Australia
Peter has been at the helm of one of the world’s most recognised brands, and packs a wealth of business management experience into his long career in Fast Moving Consumer Goods. Peter Bush counts executive positions with some of Australia’s, and the world’s, most successful FMCG companies including AGB-McNair, Arnotts, Johnson & Johnson, Unilever, Reckitt & Coleman and Schwarzkopf Australasia. He was instrumental in the Ampol/Caltex merger and reinvented the McDonald’s Australia business before becoming its managing director and CEO.
Peter’s reputation in the market is someone who thinks outside the square, gets results and is an inspirational leader. He is passionate about his work, doesn’t tolerate fools and hates to lose.
Former Managing Director and CEO of McDonald’s Australia Ltd, Peter says: “Love the Brand, live the business…” He drove the rapid revival and turnaround of the Australian business. He became involved though his consulting company in mid 2001 to ultimately lead McDonald’s Australia to be the best performing McDonald’s business in the world for 5 consecutive years. Many of the strategies he developed have now been deployed throughout the world.
Peter retired from McDonald’s and his role of Divisional President for Pacific Middle East and Africa in April 2010 to (he says) slow down a little! He will be joining several boards and pursuing his passion on the water.
Peter has had a long and successful career in Fast Moving Consumer Goods, commencing with Johnson & Johnson out of university. He held senior roles with many leading companies including, S. C. Johnson, Foote Cone Belding, Reckitt & Coleman, Ampol/Caltex and Arnotts and was CEO of AGB McNair Schwarzkopf, and McDonald’s. He also set up his own successful consulting business attracting a rich list of blue chip clients.
Much of Peter’s later career has been spent in volatile turnaround environments where he developed a talent for orchestrating successful change programmes. Of note, he played a key role in the Ampol –Caltex merger (at the time Australia’s biggest ever merger) developing a new retail strategy; the re-structuring of Arnotts and reinvigoration of its ailing brands and was the architect of the turnaround of the McDonald’s business in Australia and New Zealand
Notable highlights in Peter’s career include:
• Peter Bush, former CEO of McDonald's Australia was the architect of the dramatic turnaround of the McDonald's business and led the company to be the best performing McDonald's for five consecutive years. Many of the strategies developed in the Australian market have been deployed throughout the world. After 10 years in the commercial wilderness the turnaround was the result of strong and decisive leadership that relentlessly kept the business on a focused agenda to deliver record growth for both the company and licensees.
• The ‘Arnotts Extortion’- Australia’s biggest ever product extortion- the Arnotts management of the event is regarded as textbook. Peter was awarded a mention as one of the ‘Ten Top Executives of the Year’ by BRW (Business Review Weekly, Australia’s #1 Business magazine) for his role in the management of the event.
• 1998 Sydney Hobart Yachty Race- Peter managed the unfolding crisis on the ground and was chairman of the official inquirery into the event (Australia’s biggest ever maritime disaster) and produced a 200 page report that revolutionised ocean racing safety procedures around the world.
He set up his own consulting business, Hallam Bush Associates, in March 1998. Apart from McDonald’s, clients included Optus, Qantas, Sanitarium, Telstra, George Patterson Bates and John Singleton Advertising, Integral Energy, Herron Pharmaceuticals…among others.
The consulting business specialised in providing strategy advice, developing new strategies and aligning the company and culture to strategy, structure and capability. Additionally Peter independently did a considerable amount of work in crisis management due to his experience at Arnotts and the Sydney Hobart Race.
Peter has held several independent non-executive directorships - including Wines Pty Ltd, the Institute for Psycho-Social Research, McDonald’s Australia Limited, Speeedfins, Frucor (Frucor was cited in Forbes Magazine as one of the world’s top ten small companies in 2001) and Lion Nathan Limited.
“Excellent - Peter did a wonderful presentation; it was definitely a highlight of our conference. Peter is a true gentleman to work with and a pleasure to listen to. He hit the nail on the head in his delivery in positioning the issues McDonald faced at the time he was at the helm. Our industry is going through considerable change and Peter helped bring this message home through his presentation. I would definitely recommend Peter to anyone who is thinking of having him present at there conference”.
Financial Services Partners Group