KNOXVILLE, TENN. — Radio Systems Corporation, a manufacturer of several pet products and brands, announced April 11 the appointment of Rob Candelino to chief executive officer. Candelino will succeed Willie Wallace, who will retire after 27 years with the company, effective May 16.
Prior to Radio Systems, Candelino held several leadership positions in different areas at Unilever, including sales, marketing innovation, strategy and general management. He has 25 years of experience at Unilever and most recently served as the chief executive officer of Unilever Thailand and regional head of Inland ASEAN at Unilever, in which he aided in Unilever’s growth and expansion in the Southeast Asia market.
"For more than 30 years, Radio Systems has been committed to keeping family pets safe and healthy and in doing so has established itself as an innovative world leader in the care of pets," Candelino said. "I am excited to join this very talented team and I feel deeply honored to help continue the very purposeful mission of the company. I am also grateful to John and my new Board colleagues for their trust in me. My family and I very much look forward to joining the Knoxville community as we begin this exciting new chapter."
Candelino received a bachelor’s degree in commerce from the University of Guelph.
"After a thorough process, my fellow board members and I are pleased to have found a leader of Rob's high caliber to lead this strong and energetic company into its next phase of growth and expansion," said John Compton, chair of the board of directors, Radio Systems. "Rob brings a passion and energy to his work that inspire the people around him, along with an established expertise in growing consumer products and businesses on an international scale. He understands Radio Systems' fun, highly engaged and collaborative culture, and he has the right temperament and leadership style to nurture and lead high performing teams that will help Radio Systems provide pet health and safety products to even more customers worldwide."
Radio Systems has a large patent portfolio and operates many pet product brands, including PetSafe, SportDOG, Invisible Fence, Kurgo and Premier Pet. To support these brands, Candelino will collaborate with Radio Systems’ current leadership team, directing innovation, expanding the company’s portfolio and international presence, as well as improving the company’s marketing, merchandising and distribution strategies.
Candelino will succeed Wallace, who joined Radio Systems 27 years ago and served as chief executive officer for the past seven years.
"I also join my colleagues on the Board and throughout Radio Systems in thanking Willie for his years of service to Radio Systems," Compton said. "Radio Systems would not be the successful company it is today without Willie and his innumerable contributions over the past quarter century plus. We wish him well in his retirement."
Read more about personnel changes throughout the industry.