Nestlé Board Designates Paul Bulcke as Future CEO

   
Back to News archiveVevey,Sep 20, 2007

The Board of Directors of Nestlé S.A. today decided to propose to the shareholders that Mr. Paul Bulcke, present Head of Zone Americas, be elected to the Board at the Group's next Annual General Meeting on April 10, 2008. The Directors further declared their intention to appoint Mr. Bulcke as "Administrateur délégué"/Chief Executive Officer of Nestlé and to have him take on his new responsibilities on that same day. The Board further confirmed that Mr. Peter Brabeck-Letmathe will serve as active, non-executive, Chairman of the Board.

Mr. Bulcke's successor as Head of Zone Americas will be announced on October 18, 2007, as the new CEO designate will be involved in the necessary restructuring of the Executive Board. In April 2008, Mr. Bulcke will take over the reins of a company that has clearly outperformed its sector over the past years. Delivering the Nestlé model, consisting of both top-as well as bottom-line growth over the past 10 years, while at the same time completing the strategic transformation, new organizational structures and the implementation of GLOBE, puts the Group in a very favorable position to consolidate and enhance the progress achieved in the past.

With the forthcoming appointment of Mr. Bulcke, the Board concludes a process initiated in 2005. At that time, it decided to combine the roles of Chairman and CEO, in order to accelerate the strategic transformation process in the direction of Nutrition, Health and Wellness. The Group has now reached its objective of becoming the world's foremost nutrition company. Furthermore, the successful implementation of GLOBE allowed the Group to adopt the new organizational structure required to continue the process of generating significant performance improvement and strong growth. With the foreseeable increasing workload of the Chairman's office, Mr. Peter Brabeck-Letmathe and the Board felt the time was appropriate to again separate these two key functions, as well as bring about a generational change at the CEO level. The timing is dictated by the determination to ensure management continuity by entrusting the office of CEO to a younger person who will thus be able to assume the CEO mandate for a number of years.

The professional selection process that resulted in the nomination of Mr. Bulcke took place under the leadership of the independent Compensation and Nomination Committee. The Board unanimously approved the Committee's proposal as the best choice for the Company at this point in time.

Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, Chairman and CEO of Nestlé, said: "The Board chose a strong and pragmatic business leader, ideally suited to lead the Group in a period that will be marked by a phase of strategic and operational consolidation and a continued broadening of our Nutrition, Health and Wellness business. At the same time Nestlé will maintain its strong growth momentum in the developing and emerging world. Paul Bulcke has a proven performance record both in developing as well as in industrialized markets in Latin America and in Europe. As a member of Nestlé's Executive Board, in charge of Zone Americas, he played a decisive role in transforming this region not only into the Group's largest, but also into its most profitable one. He furthermore participated actively in the Group's strategic and operational transformation and assumed a key role in delivering the results needed to achieve the Nestlé model. The Board feels very confident in his capacity to continue Nestlé's successful transformation into the world's pre-eminent Nutrition, Health and Wellness company and I am personally looking forward to working with him in my future role as an active, non-executive, Chairman of the Board."

Contacts:
Media: François-Xavier Perroud Tel.: +41-21-924 2596
Investors: Roddy Child-Villiers Tel.: +41-21-924 3622
Read Mr Paul Bulcke's CV