The CEO of Del Monte Foods is to leave the US food group once its US$5bn sale to a private-equity consortium is complete.

Del Monte is set to be bought by a group of private-equity firms led by buyout giant KKR and, although chairman and CEO Rick Wolford is to stay on until the deal is complete, he has outlined his to plan to leave.

In an SEC filing made yesterday (26 January) by Del Monte, Wolford said that “the sponsors have initiated a search for my successor, which is well under way”.

He said the company expects Dave Meyers to continue as CFO through the close of the transaction, but that current executive vice president of finance, Larry Bodner, will become the CFO of the new Del Monte Corp. on completion of the merger.

KKR is also in the process of finalising the new board of directors at the company. Wolford said that the company expects that, upon completion of the merger, “sponsor representatives”, which include KKR, Vestar Capital Partners and Centerview Partners, will “make up a significant portion of the board of directors.

Wolford said that the deal remains “on track” to complete financing and secure required approvals.

The deal is expected to close shortly after a stockholder vote on 15 February.