The soft drinks and sweets group, Cadbury Schweppes, has announced today that Todd Stitzer will assume the role of deputy chief executive from 30 December, and will retain the position until he takes over as chief executive in May.

The company had announced earlier this month that Stitzer would take over from John Sunderland as CEO in 2003.

The company has also announced the resignation of chief operating officer, John Brock, who is leaving Cadbury to take up the role of CEO at brewing group, Interbrew. Brock is to leave at the end of the year.

"On behalf of the board and his many colleagues, I would like to thank John for his significant contribution to the success of our business over the years and wish him and his family well in his next endeavour," said chief executive officer, John Sunderland.