Norway-based dairy group Tine has announced CEO Hanne Refsholt is to step down after 14 years at the helm.

Refsholt, who has spent more than two decades at Tine, will be succeeded by Gunnar Hovland, the CEO of Norwegian banking group BN Bank, on 1 January.

Hovland is returning to Tine, having spent 12 years at the business until 2008. Since then, he has worked in the energy and finance sectors, including, most recently seven years in the hot seat at BN Bank.

Tine chairman Trond Reierstad said: “I would like to thank Hanne Refsholt for developing Tine and the solid results during the period. We are also very pleased to have Gunnar Hovland’s expertise and commercial experience to strengthen the work of making Tine the consumer and customer’s first choice.”

Hovland, whose career at Tine included a stint as sales director, said: “Tine is one of Norway’s strongest brands with significant innovation and offensive ambitions both nationally and internationally. I am looking forward to directing the company in close cooperation with employees, customers and consumers. Tine has over 500 brands and a wonderful foundation that I hope to build on.”