Pladis, the international snacks arm of Turkey’s Yildiz Holding and home to brands including McVitie’s and BN, said today (21 September) CEO Cem Karakas has decided to step down with immediate effect.

Karakas has also taken “a leave of absence” from a second role as deputy chairman at Yildiz. Pladis cited “family health reasons”.

Jim Zaza, a Pladis board member and chairman of the UK arm of the group’s United Biscuits unit, is to replace Karakas as CEO on an interim basis.

Pladis said its board had started “a formal search and selection process” to find a permanent replacement for Karakas.

Yildiz set up Pladis in 2016 to house international snacks businesses it had acquired, including United Biscuits in 2014.

Karakas, then Yildiz’s CFO, was appointed the chief executive of the UK-headquartered Pladis.

Last year, Pladis named GlaxoSmithKline executive Luigi La Corta as its new CFO.

In April this year, the company hired former Procter & Gamble and PepsiCo executive Dmitry Ivanov to the newly-created, global position of chief commercial officer.