Thursday, 30 June 2016 08:55

Fonterra makes changes near the top

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Fonterra executive Jacqueline Chow addresses farmers at the recent DairyNZ Farmers Forum while chief executive Theo Spierings looks on. Fonterra executive Jacqueline Chow addresses farmers at the recent DairyNZ Farmers Forum while chief executive Theo Spierings looks on.

Fonterra is set to lose two more executives.

The co-op's president greater China and managing director Asia Middle East Africa, Johan Priem, will retire next month.

Jacqueline Chow, newly-appointed chief operating officer global consumer and foodservice, will leave in early 2017 to return to Australia.

The departures herald a smaller seven-member executive group, says chief executive Theo Spierings. They will focus on achieving the co-op's ambition, he says.

"This is the right step in our evolution. We're keeping farmers at the heart of our co-op while focusing on our global customers and consumers."

Coming to the fore are managing director Oceania Judith Swales and group director cooperative affairs Miles Hurrell.

Swales, who led the streamlining of the co-op's Australian business, is the new chief operating officer velocity and innovation. Hurrell is now chief operating officer Farm Source.

Spierings says Chow, due to leave in early 2017, had been "instrumental in driving our transformation agenda [but] clear about her intention to retire from executive life". Until then "our co-op stands to benefit greatly from her wealth of consumer and business experience".

Swales will manage the co-op's transformation and disruption agenda, and all R&D and technology.

"With Judith heading up velocity and innovation we will get an end-to-end view of our efforts to drive efficiency... and a strategic view of game changing business models."

Meanwhile Alex Turnbull will continue to head Fonterra's Latin American business as part of the global consumer and foodservice business unit but will leave the executive team.

Kelvin Wickham, previously managing director of global ingredients, whose role and position remains unchanged, is now chief operating officer NZMP.

Robert Spurway, previously managing director global operations, is now chief operating officer global operations.

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