London / UK. (pf) Premier Foods PLC announces that, following receipt of Michael Clarke´s resignation, its Board of Directors has appointed Gavin Darby as Chief Executive Officer with effect from 04th February 2013.
Darby has a strong consumer goods pedigree and extensive senior executive experience. He spent fifteen years at the Coca-Cola Company in senior leadership roles before moving to Vodafone in 2001, where he was latterly CEO for its non-European joint ventures, the fastest growing segment of the company. His most recent role was as Chief Executive Officer of Cable + Wireless Worldwide PLC, which he successfully turned around before negotiating its eventual sale.
This appointment follows Michael Clarke´s indication to the Board that, having delivered the initial turnaround of the Company and set a course for future sustainable profitable growth, he was potentially considering moving on to pursue other business opportunities. Clarke will step down from the Board with immediate effect and has agreed to remain available to the Company until mid 2013 to ensure an orderly handover to his successor.
Commenting on this announcement, David Beever, Chairman of Premier Foods said: «I am delighted to welcome Gavin Darby to Premier Foods. His strong FMCG background and management track record make him the ideal candidate to lead the Company. The Board very much looks forward to working with Gavin to continue driving sustainable profitable growth at Premier».
«Michael Clarke and the team have done a first class job in stabilising the business, strengthening its balance sheet, divesting non-core businesses and generating momentum. This is a significant achievement in a challenging market and I would like to thank Mike on behalf of the Board for his contribution».
Gavin Darby: «I am very excited to be taking on this role. Although markets remain difficult, I look forward to working with the team to develop and grow the Company´s Power Brands in the coming years. Premier Foods has great potential and I fully intend to invest a significant personal sum in the shares of the Company after the Full Year results are published in February which the Company will match».