Multinational food company Danone earlier this week announced the appointment of Antoine de Saint-Affrique as Chief Executive Officer, effective 15 September 2021. He will take over from Véronique Penchienati-Bosetta and Shane Grant, who took joint interim leadership after former CEO Emmanuel Faber was ousted in March this year.
de Saint-Affrique has spent more than 30 years in the food industry and has a track record of balancing a profitable growth strategy with environmental responsibility—a strategic focus for much of the industry. He is currently Chief Executive Officer of global chocolate maker and cocoa processor Barry Callebaut, and prior to that held a series of senior executive positions at global consumer goods company Unilever, including President of the Foods Division. Interestingly, he also spent several years at condiments manufacturer Amora Maille, which was owned by Danone before being acquired by Unilever.
Gilles Schnepp, Chairman of Danone, said that de Saint-Affrique's appointment marks a new chapter of leadership for the company. “We unanimously agree that Antoine de Saint-Affrique is a standout leader in the consumer goods world. He has a distinguished track record of innovation and delivery. Importantly, he brings the right blend of strategic vision, international consumer goods experience, and operational execution skills to Danone,” he said.
“The Board is confident that Antoine, together with the rest of the leadership team, will deliver sustainable value for shareholders, and all our stakeholders. Antoine’s proven ability to successfully deliver a purpose-led growth strategy in a sustainable way fits well with our Mission and long-term goals. He will have all the room and resources a CEO can have to best assess and direct Danone’s strategy for the future.”