Premier Foods plc chairman Ronnie Bell has decided to leave the UK food manufacturer after 18 months in the role.
As chairman, Bell has overseen a tumultuous period for Premier that included a poor set of trading figures in 2011, the departure of a chief executive and disposals of assets.
However, alongside current chief executive Michael Clarke, another former director at Kraft, Bell has devised a strategy to turn Premier around, which included a focus on eight “power brands”, more disposals, increased marketing expenditure and a new financial package with the company’s lenders.
Premier said today (1 June) that Bell wanted to “focus on his other business and governance commitments”.
Bell said: “I’m delighted that we now have the right management, strategic and financial foundations in place to drive Premier Foods‘ return to growth. Having set a course to turn the company around, I believe it is an appropriate time to step down. I’m confident that with Michael Clarke at the helm, the company has a bright future.”
Premier senior independent director David Beever will become chairman on an interim basis while the company looks to appoint a permanent replacement for Bell.