PepsiCo has made two high-profile appointments, sparking speculation that the soft drinks and snacks giant is setting up a successor for CEO Indra Nooyi.

John Compton, the current PepsiCo Americas Foods CEO, was named as president of PepsiCo – a new role for the company.

He will be replaced as PepsiCo Americas Foods CEO by Brian Cornell, who was most recently president and CEO of Wal-Mart’s Sam’s Club.

Compton will continue to report to Nooyi and will assume responsibility for all of PepsiCo’s existing global category groups. He will also be responsible for driving innovation and brand building while looking for ways to significantly reduce the overall cost structure of the company.

“This executive position will serve as a key driver for our long-term growth strategy,” Nooyi said. “A 28-year PepsiCo veteran, John brings a unique insight to this critical role. I have absolute confidence in John’s ability to work productively with the sector CEOs to bring about a step-change for PepsiCo’s growth and profitability.”

Cornell will report to Nooyi and will be responsible for Frito-Lay North America, Quaker Foods & Snacks North America, PepsiCo Mexico, South America Foods, PepsiCo customer teams and all Power of One activities within the Americas. 

“Brian’s strategic vision and deep experience across several industries provide a unique perspective to our senior leadership team,” Nooyi said. “He has successfully led transformational agendas at his assignments at Sam’s Club and Safeway and is well-versed in what it takes to be a senior executive of a large public company. We look forward to his contributions and welcome him back to the PepsiCo family.”