Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc. on Tuesday named Anthony N. “Tony” Thompson as president and chief executive, effective June 1.

Thompson, 47, most recently president and chief operating officer of Louisville, Ky.-based Papa John’s International Inc., will succeed James H. Morgan, 66.

Morgan will step down from those two positions but will continue to serve as executive chairman, the Winston-Salem, N.C.-based company said in a statement.

“Tony’s background, accomplishments, professionalism and commitment to excellence all are a perfect complement to the culture, mission and values of Krispy Kreme,” Morgan said in prepared remarks. “Personally, I am greatly looking forward to working with him.”

Thompson was promoted to Papa John’s COO and its first president in August of last year. Before that promotion, he held various positions at Papa John’s, including executive vice president of global operations.

“In Krispy Kreme,” Thompson said, “I found the right combination of culture, an iconic brand, and a shared long-term vision. I am excited and feel privileged to become part of the Krispy Kreme family as we work together on the journey to the next level of worldwide growth of this great brand.”

Before joining Papa John’s in 2006, Thompson worked for The Scotts Miracle-Gro Co., as well as Conagra Grocery Products Co. and Gulf Coast Coca Cola.

Krispy Kreme has also named Kansas City, Mo.-based VML as its global digital agency.

VML, which has worked with such brands as Kellogg’s, Kleenex, Gatorade, Dell and Southwest Airlines, will assist Krispy Kreme in the strategic digital development and engagement, the company said.

“Krispy Kreme has been on an accelerated path in growing its digital presence over the last several years, making it a key driver in our marketing mix,” Dwayne Chambers, Krispy Kreme’s senior vice president and chief marketing officer, said in a statement.

Krispy Kreme has more than 800 locations in more than 20 nations.

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