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In October, Hanekom, 56, will replace Bruce Henderson, who has been at the helm of the food and beverage company for more than two decades.

After joining RFG Holdings in 2015 as managing director of its long-life beverages unit, Hanekom was promoted to his current position of deputy CEO last July.

“Pieter has been a member of the RFG executive committee since 2015. He led the group’s successful entry into the fruit juice market and subsequent growth in this highly competitive category. He has been integrally involved in the development of the strategy and the expansion of the long-life foods business and we congratulate him on his well-deserved appointment as CEO,” RFG Holdings chairperson Dr Yvonne Muthien said.

Henderson will continue to serve on RFG Holdings’ board in a non-executive capacity.

Dr Muthien added: “Bruce has led the group with distinction, overseeing the expansion from a single brand fruit business into a diversified, multi-brand food producer owning a portfolio of market-leading brands and a world-class production base.

“During this time the group has concluded multiple acquisitions and expanded into several new product categories and geographic markets. Bruce led the listing on the JSE in 2014 which was a pivotal point in the group’s history.”

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By GlobalData

Earlier this month, RFG Holdings reported its financial results for the six months to the end of March. Turnover fell 3.4% to ZAR2.8bn (US$204.4m) as Covid-19 hit sales of fruit juices and pies, two of the group’s best-selling products.

However, operating profit rose 14.9% to ZAR185m. The company said its “headline earnings” increased 46.4% to ZAR119m.