Russian retailer X5 Retail Group has appointed ex-Mars Inc executive Keiran Balfe as its CFO.

Balfe, who has around two decades of experience in the Russian market, was Wrigley’s deputy general manager and CFO for emerging markets from 2001 to 2009. US-based confectionery giant Mars bought gum maker Wrigley in 2007.

Balfe will take up the role of CFO with X5 from 11 January, the retailer said today (23 December). His appointment as statutory director will be placed on the agenda of an extraordinary shareholders meeting to be held in February, it added.

Balfe will take over from Anton Volyanskiy who served as acting CFO during the management transition since September. He will resume his position as the company’s deputy CFO and will work closely with Balfe. 

X5 Retail Group’s previous CFO Evgeny Kornilov left the firm in October.

Lev Khasis, CEO of X5, said: “Kieran Balfe brings invaluable consumer industry experience and knowledge of global operational best practices to the job of CFO. We plan to accelerate growth significantly in 2011, with record new store openings and integration of the Kopeyka acquisition to build on our number one position, and continued execution of our ‘strategic efficiency program’ to drive operational excellence and competitive advantages.”