Yıldız Holding has announced the appointment of Nurtaç Ziyal Afridi as the new chief executive officer of Godiva chocolates.
The announcement comes two months after her appointment as the chocolatier's interim chief executive.
In this period, Afridi and her team developed a three-year strategy to seize new opportunities through Godiva's dynamic omnichannel structure.
She also serves as a board member of Godiva and Yıldız Holding's chief strategy and growth officer.
'An Impressive Combination'
Commenting on her appointment, Godiva chairman Murat Ülker said, "Afridi brings an impressive combination of business, operational and financial expertise to Godiva along with a strong passion for people and nurturing talent.
"She has a proven track record of powerful business results in corporate development, which will ensure that Godiva continues to capture opportunities that honour its roots and align with its bold vision for the future."
Afridi will focus on making Godiva's popular chocolates and chocolate-inspired products accessible to new consumers and engage with loyal consumers in new ways by extending its channels, including online and FDM (food drug mass).
She added, "We continue to be very focused on leveraging digital technology to anticipate the needs of consumers, exceed expectations, and make Godiva the most top-of-mind premium chocolate brand.
"I am honoured to work with my extraordinary team on these endeavours during such a pivotal time for Godiva."
Afridi played an instrumental role during Yildiz's transformation into a global snacking group with more than 300 brands available in over 120 countries, the company added.
She led the acquisitions of iconic brands such as Godiva in 2008 and McVitie's, Carr's, Jacobs, and BN (United Biscuits) in 2014.
She also led the licensing deal for Godiva in Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand.
She spearheaded the acquisition and IPO of Sok Marketler - the second-largest discount retailer in Turkey - and Bizim Toptan, the leading discount retailer company in Turkey.
Chairman of Yıldız Holding, Ali Ülker, stated, "As Yıldız Holding, we are very much focused on increasing women's representation at senior executive levels and we have been investing in this development for many years.
"We pay great attention to preparing our female employees who have improved themselves within our Holding's vision and corporate culture for such responsibilities and to providing them the best environment for self-improvement through mentorship programmes."
Before joining Yildiz Holding, Afridi held leadership positions at Accenture and Arthur Andersen & Co.
She holds an MBA from Germany and a bachelor's degree in marketing and finance from Istanbul.