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Change of Leadership at Unilever

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Change of Leadership at Unilever

Change of Leadership at Unilever
November 30
10:05 2018

Unilever has announced that CEO Paul Polman has decided to retire from the company. Alan Jope (pictured above), currently President, Beauty & Personal Care, has been appointed to the position, effective 1 January 2019, with Paul Polman supporting the transition process during the first half of the year before leaving the company in early July 2019.

Paul Polman has been Unilever CEO for over 10 years and has worked in the consumer goods industry for almost four decades. During his tenure, the company has delivered consistent top and bottom line growth ahead of its markets. Its focus on successfully pioneering a new model of sustainable growth has served the needs of its many stakeholders and created excellent returns for its shareholders, delivering a Total Shareholder Return of 290% over that period.

Alan Jope has led Beauty & Personal Care, Unilever’s largest division, since 2014 and has been on the company’s Leadership Executive since 2011. He has an excellent track record of leading Unilever’s business in both developed and emerging markets, having run the company’s North Asia business for four years, served as President, Russia, Africa & Middle East, and spent over a decade in senior Foods, Home Care and Personal Care roles for Unilever US. Alan joined the company as a graduate marketing trainee in 1985.

Paul Polman, chief executive of Unilever.

Unilever Chairman Marijn Dekkers said: “Paul is an exceptional business leader who has transformed Unilever, making it one of the best-performing companies in its sector, and one of the most admired businesses in the world. His role in helping to define a new era of responsible capitalism, embodied in the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan, marks him out as one of the most far-sighted business leaders of his generation.

“Paul’s vision, drive and performance focus, combined with his commitment to serving the best long-term interests of the company, have materially strengthened Unilever. He leaves a more agile and resilient company, well placed to win in this fast-changing, dynamic industry. I’d like to thank him personally, and on behalf of the Board, for his contribution to Unilever.”

Paul Polman said: “I congratulate Alan on his appointment and look forward to working with him on the transition. Having worked closely with Alan for many years, I am highly confident that under his leadership, Unilever will prosper long into the future. His appointment demonstrates the strength of Unilever’s succession planning and talent pipeline.”

Alan Jope said: “It will be a huge privilege to lead Unilever – a truly global company full of talented people, and brilliant brands. Over the 30 years I have worked at Unilever, I have seen the many ways in which our brands improve people’s lives, positively impacting more than 2 billion citizens every day.

“Our global footprint includes strong positions in many important markets for the future and our focus will remain on serving our consumers, and our other multiple stakeholders, to deliver long-term growth and value creation. I’d also like to extend my gratitude to Paul for his remarkable leadership of Unilever and look forward to working closely with him during the transition.”

A successor to the role of President, Beauty & Personal Care will be announced shortly.

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