Devondale is the flagship brand of the Australian cooperative

Devondale is the flagship brand of the Australian cooperative

Murray Goulburn today (10 June) appointed Alan Tilley as interim chief financial officer to join the troubled Australian dairy cooperative's executive leadership team.

Tilley, who will take up the post on 14 June, is joining Murray Goulburn from the NRMA Motoring and Services Group, where he has served as group CFO since 2008.

Tilley is the latest addition to Murray Goulburn's senior management since a shake-up of the group's leadership team, which came in the wake of profit warnings from the business and the departure of MD Gary Helou and CFO Brad Hingle.

The changes at the top of Murray Goulburn have included the appointment of Fiona Smith, previously the group's executive general manager for corporate development, as its chief operating officer. Smith is working under interim CEO David Mallinson, the group's former executive general manager for operations.

The troubles began at Murray Goulburn, the owner of the Devondale brand, after the company was forced to revise its profit guidance of AUD85.8m, which was given as the cooperative prepared to list some of its share capital in July last year.

Murray Goulburn subsequently issued a series of profit warnings. In February, the group said it expected net profit of approximately AUD63m (US$46.7m). The company cited historically weak dairy commodity prices. In April, Murray Goulburn downgraded its full-year net profit forecast to AUD39-42m. Issues in China, along with currency exchange and inventory shifts, were cited as the reason for the downgrade.

Murray Goulburn has not commented on reports that farmers are also calling for chairman Philip Tracy and the group's deputy chairman to stand down.