Des started his business career at the young age of 15, diving right into the foodservice industry by working in the family business. Learning the service industry from the ground up played a key role in his becoming an effective leader of a large corporation. His passion for excellence and business savvy saw him rise through the ranks and become an asset to every company he worked for.
As President of Perishables at Safeway Inc. Des was responsible for the oversight of $20 billion worth of perishable inventory which included meat, seafood, floral, produce, bakery, and food service. Key accomplishments at Safeway include increasing transactions by 9%, enhancing the perishable business line’s profitability, and creating a meal zone which would result in $500 million in revenue.
Des served as President of IHOP as well as being an executive team member of DineEquity, the world’s largest casual dining business. While at IHOP he initiated national media plans which marketed his firm properly leading to a 400 basis point outperformance of its competitive set. On top of excellent performance, Des was the mind behind IHOP Cafe an expansion of the restaurant chain’s core business.
In the early 2000’s Des served Orion Food Systems (now Hot Stuff Foods) as their Chief Executive and Chairman. A multinational food chain with more than 2,000 locations across the globe, Hot Stuff Foods saw Des helped to organize a company buy-out that ultimately increased value by 74% over the following three years. As he had done in positions past, Des used his business insight to organize elements and initiate innovative practices to enhance multiple business lines.
Des Hague holds an MBA with a focus in International Business from the American College in London.