Norway's Orkla To Give Each Business More Autonomy, Names New CEO

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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Norway's Orkla To Give Each Business More Autonomy, Names New CEO

Orkla chief executive Jaan Ivar Semlitsch is to step down with immediate effect, and will be replaced by veteran board member Nils Selte, the Norwegian producer of food and other consumer goods said.

Selte, a non-executive member of Orkla's board since 2014, will be asked to speed up the group's transformation, the company said, adding that it will seek to create more value for shareholders by giving individual businesses greater autonomy and responsibility.

"We are now entering a phase that calls for a new form of leadership," commented Orkla board Chair Stein Erik Hagen, who is also the group's largest shareholder.

More Dynamic Approach

Meanwhile, Selte in a statement said the company will adopt a more dynamic approach to its portfolio, without reducing focus on its biggest markets and categories.

"We will also be open to disposals, partnerships or stock exchange listing of businesses if we find this expedient," he said.


He added that the company is entering a phase that "calls for a new form of leadership" citing the need to give each part of its business greater responsibility.

“In the time to come we will adopt a more dynamic approach to our portfolio, without reducing our focus on our biggest markets and categories," he said.

Orkla's businesses in the Nordic and Baltic region as well as central Europe and India have around 21,500 employees, making products ranging from frozen pizzas and snacks to toothbrushes and detergents. In 2021, the group reported a turnover of NOK 50.4 billion (€5.29 billion). It has approximately 21,500 employees.

Last month, Orkla said that it was ceasing its operations in Russia, due to the conflict in Ukraine.

News by Reuters, edited by ESM. For more A-Brands news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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