•  Michael Clarke resigns
  •  Gavin Darby nammed replacement
  •  Clarke to stay with Premier until mid-2013
Clarke stands down as Premier CEO

Clarke stands down as Premier CEO

Premier Foods plc announced today (28 January) that its chief executive, Michael Clarke, has resigned.

Clarke joined Premier eighteen months ago. The company said that Clarke planned to exit the group "having delivered the initial turnaround of the company and set a course for future sustainable profitable growth".

Clarke will be replaced by former Cable & Wireless Worldwide CEO Gavin Darby. Darby will take up his new role as CEO on 4 February, although Clarke will remain with Premier until the middle of the year.

Darby, who had spent 15 years at Coca-Cola before joining Vodaphone, commented: "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."

Check back for more on Premier's new CEO after the company's conference call, which is to be held later this morning.

Show the press release

 

Premier Foods announces appointment of Gavin Darby as Chief Executive Officer to continue transformation
Premier Foods today announces that, following receipt of Michael Clarke's resignation, its Board of Directors has appointed Gavin Darby as Chief Executive Officer with effect from 4th February 2013.
Gavin 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.
Michael 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 commented:
"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."
The Company announced on 17 January that its fourth quarter trading for 2012 was in line with its expectations and that its Full Year results for 2012 are expected to be in line with current market expectations.
No further information is required to be disclosed pursuant to LR 9.6.13 R

 

Original source: Premier Foods plc