Board of Directors

Niall Fitzgerald, Chair of the Board at ofi

Niall FitzGerald KBE DSA

Chair and Chair of the Nomination Committee

Date of Appointment: 9 September 2021

 

Niall was Chair and CEO of Unilever for 8 years and an executive board director for 18 years. During his 37 years with the company, Niall served as Finance Director, Foods Director and Detergents Director and during his Unilever career he lived and worked in the UK, the Netherlands, Ireland, the US and South Africa. Niall is Chair of The Leverhulme Trust, Chair Hakluyt International Advisory Council and Patron British Irish Chamber of Commerce. 

 

Niall has chaired a broad range of companies and public bodies including Reuters, Brand Learning, British Museum, Nelson Mandela Legacy Trust, International Business Council and the Advertising Association, and has also served on several Boards, including Bank of Ireland, the Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum, International Policy Council for Agriculture and Trade and was President of South Africa’s International Advisory Council.  

Shekhar Anantharaman, Executive Director and CEO at ofi

A. Shekhar

Executive Director & CEO

Shekhar was appointed CEO of ofi in January 2020 upon its creation following the reorganization of the Olam Group. Shekhar joined Olam in 1992 and has been an Executive Director and a member of the Group Board since 1998. Shekhar held a variety of roles in the Olam Group, he was previously Group Chief Operating Officer, Executive Director – Finance and Business Development, and prior to this he incubated and managed various global businesses including the Nuts, Spices and Packaged Foods businesses, where he led many of the Company’s organic and inorganic growth initiatives. 

Rishi Kalra, Executive Director and CFO at ofi

Rishi Kalra

Executive Director & CFO

Rishi was appointed CFO of ofi in January 2020 upon its creation following the reorganization of the Olam Group. Rishi began his career with Olam in 2000 and during this period has served as CFO India, CFO West Africa, and President and Global Head of Corporate Finance. He is a founding member of the first Circle of Practice in Asia of The Prince of Wales Charitable Project, Accounting for Sustainability (A4S). A4S inspires action by finance leaders to drive a fundamental shift towards resilient business models and a sustainable economy.

Patrick Coveney, Non-Executive Director at ofi

Patrick Coveney

Non-Executive Director

Patrick Coveney became CEO of SSP Group plc in March 2022. Prior to this he was CEO of Greencore Group Plc, a position he held since 2005 and during which time he led Greencore’s transformation into an international leader in value-added convenience food. Prior to joining Greencore, Patrick worked for nine years at McKinsey & Company in Europe and North America. Patrick is a Non-Executive Director of Glanbia plc and Chair of Core Media.

Nancy Cruickshank, Non-Executive Director at ofi

Nancy Cruickshank

Non-Executive Director

Nancy started her career in marketing and advertising roles with Conde Nast, before progressing to a range of general management and transformation roles with BSkyB, VideoJug, Telegraph Media Group, Weve, and until 2021 Nancy was the Chief Digital Officer for Carlsberg.Nancy currently serves as a Non-Executive Director on the boards of In The Style Group plc, Oodle Finance Ltd, Allegro EU SA and Flutter Entertainment plc.  She was previously a Non-Executive Director at Bango plc, Carlsberg Group A/S, On-Mobile Global Ltd and Telecity Group plc.

Nagi Hamiyeh, Non-Executive Director at ofi

Nagi Hamiyeh

Non-Executive Director

Nagi is a Non-Executive Director of Olam Group Limited.  He brings more than 28 years of experience in strategy, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, growth equity, private equity and public investing in multiple industries across the globe. Nagi is the Joint Head of Temasek’s Investment Group and is concurrently the Head of Portfolio Development.  Prior to joining Temasek in 2005, Nagi was a banker with Credit Suisse First Boston’s Energy Group and began his career at Bain and Company.

Penny Hughes, Non-Executive Director, Chair of Remuneration & Talent Committee

Penny Hughes

Non-Executive Director, Chair of Remuneration & Talent Committee

Penny’s executive career in the consumer goods industry led to an extensive portfolio board career which spans retail, media, leisure, technology and financial services in both public and private company boards. Penny is currently Chair of the boards of The Gym Group plc and Riverstone Living Ltd and has served as Chair of Aston Martin Lagonda and Chair of the Remuneration and Sustainability board committees for several large cap companies including Royal Bank of Scotland, WM Morrison, The Gap Inc and Vodafone.

Brian May Non-Executive Director, Chair of Audit & Risk Committee

Brian May

Non-Executive Director, Chair of Audit & Risk Committee

Brian’s executive career with Bunzl plc spanned 26 years, including 14 years as Chief Financial Officer, during which period the business underwent significant strategic and operational transformation. Brian is a Non-Executive Director and Audit Committee member for Ferguson plc, a Non-Executive Director, Chair of the Remuneration Committee and Audit Committee member for ConvaTec Group plc, and he previously served on the board of United Utilities Group PLC.

Belinda Richards, Senior Independant Director, Chair of Governance and Nominations Committee

Belinda Richards

Senior Independent Non-Executive Director, Chair of Sustainability Committee

Belinda was a senior partner at Deloitte LLP before embarking on her board career which has a particular focus on the consumer products and financial services sectors. Belinda is currently a Non-Executive Director and Audit Committee Chair for both Avast plc and Schroder Japan Growth Fund plc, as well as a Non-Executive Director for Phoenix Group Holdings plc and Monks Investment Trust plc. Belinda has previously served on the boards of WM Morrison, Grainger and Balfour Beatty.

Amanda Sourry, Non-Executive Director at ofi

Amanda Sourry

Non-Executive Director

Amanda Sourry spent over 30 years of her executive career working for Unilever plc where she gained extensive global marketing and business experience in consumer packaged goods. Amanda was most recently President of Unilever North America, and previously President Unilever Global Foods. She was a Member of the Unilever Leadership Executive from 2015 to 2020. Amanda is currently a Non-Executive Director of The Kroger Co., Trivium Packaging and PVH Corp where she also Chairs the Compensation Committee.

Sunny George Verghese, Non-Executive Director at ofi

Sunny Verghese

Non-Executive Director

Sunny is Group CEO of Olam Group Limited and as part of the re-organisation within Olam, he also became CEO of Olam Agri.  Sunny founded Olam in 1989 after having been with the Kewalram Chanrai Group (KC Group), prior to which he worked for Unilever in India.  From 2018 to 2021 Sunny was Chair of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), the global, CEO-led organisation dedicated to accelerating the transition to a sustainable world.  He previously chaired CitySpring Infrastructure Management Pte Ltd, a listed Business Trust in Singapore and was also a Commissioner of the Business and Sustainable Development Commission (BSDC).

Carole Wainaina

Non-Executive Director

Carole is currently Senior Advisor to the CEO at Africa50, an investment fund set up by African governments and the African Development Bank to help bridge Africa’s infrastructure funding gap. Carole was previously the Chief Operating Officer since 2017. Her previous executive appointments include EVP & Chief HR Officer at Royal Philips Ltd, and at the Coca-Cola Company where Carole held the roles of Chief of Staff for the Chairman & CEO, as well as HR Director for EuroAsia & Africa. In addition, Carole was Assistant Secretary General for Human Resources at the United Nations. Carole is a Non-Executive Director of Helios Towers Plc.

Niall Fitzgerald, Chair of the Board at ofi
Niall FitzGerald KBE DSA
Chair and Chair of the Nomination Committee
Shekhar Anantharaman, Executive Director and CEO at ofi
A. Shekhar
Executive Director & CEO
Rishi Kalra, Executive Director and CFO at ofi
Rishi Kalra
Executive Director & CFO
Patrick Coveney, Non-Executive Director at ofi
Patrick Coveney
Non-Executive Director
Nancy Cruickshank, Non-Executive Director at ofi
Nancy Cruickshank
Non-Executive Director
Nagi Hamiyeh, Non-Executive Director at ofi
Nagi Hamiyeh
Non-Executive Director
Penny Hughes, Non-Executive Director, Chair of Remuneration & Talent Committee
Penny Hughes
Non-Executive Director, Chair of Remuneration & Talent Committee
Brian May Non-Executive Director, Chair of Audit & Risk Committee
Brian May
Non-Executive Director, Chair of Audit & Risk Committee
Belinda Richards, Senior Independant Director, Chair of Governance and Nominations Committee
Belinda Richards
Senior Independent Non-Executive Director, Chair of Sustainability Committee
Amanda Sourry, Non-Executive Director at ofi
Amanda Sourry
Non-Executive Director
Sunny George Verghese, Non-Executive Director at ofi
Sunny Verghese
Non-Executive Director
Carole Wainaina
Non-Executive Director

Read ofi news

Articles Feb 14, 2024
The sweet treats and trends winning hearts this Valentine’s Day

Author | Madeline Bills | Cocoa Innovation Manager at ofi

 

Chocolate has long been synonymous with Valentine’s Day, with sweet treats a classic way to celebrate the season of love.

But Valentine’s Day is evolving, with Gen Z and Millennials redefining traditions.  Many consumers are choosing to celebrate this day with friends and family members, as well as significant others. In 2023, 40% of Gen Z and 20% of Millennials said they were planning to buy their friends a Valentine’s gift.[1] And what better way to do so than with cocoa?

 

As consumers change the way they celebrate Valentine’s Day – and who they celebrate with – there is an opportunity for manufacturers to develop new products.  From introducing more exotic flavors in confectionery to creating more experiential formats and expanding into new categories, we’re seeing companies inventing new ways for consumers to celebrate the season of love with those who matter most to them. At ofi we explore the top chocolate, confectionery and bakery trends shaping Valentine’s Day 2024 and how manufacturers can develop new offerings to win the hearts of consumers.

 

[1] Actually, Lots of Gen Z Would Rather Spend Valentine’s Day with Their Friends - YPulse

Press Release Feb 7, 2024
ofi creates solar-powered cocoa warehouse at Port of Amsterdam

olam food ingredients (ofi), a global leader in naturally good food and beverage ingredients, and Commodity Centre Group(“CCG”), a leader in supply chain, logistics, and warehousing solutions in the UK and Northern Europe, have partnered to create a cocoa bean warehouse terminal exclusively using green energy at the Port of Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

 

ofi and CCG jointly achieved this by installing nearly 7,000 solar panels at the warehouse, which could lead to the reduction of 1,350 tons of CO2 per year. This is the equivalent of 67,500 trees absorbing carbon from the atmosphere and utilizes roof space in the region of two football pitches in size to maximize green energy usage. The company expects the warehouse to also be certified carbon-neutral in the future. 

 

The warehouse is critical for helping ofi deliver high-quality cocoa beans to its global confectionery brand customers. Using an innovative conveyor belt system, cocoa is directed into one of the 110 available pens, creating bulk micro lots managed by CCG. Not only does this enable greater segregation of beans to preserve their flavor, but it also helps maintain quality and traceability1. The company believes it is one of the only systems like this in existence, and thanks to the solar installation, the process now exclusively uses renewable energy.

 

This latest move forms part of ofi’s ambition for sustainable cocoa, Cocoa Compass, which sets ambitious goals – including a 30% reduction in natural capital costs2 by 2030. ofi reduced these costs in 2021 in its global cocoa processing operations by 11% per metric ton of product output, partly due to investments in renewable energy initiatives. For example, a network of biomass boilers fuelled by cocoa shells, which was recently shortlisted for an Edie sustainability award.

 

Chris Beetge, President of Europe, Middle East, and North Africa, ofi, said: “We’re always looking at ways to drive decarbonization across our cocoa value chain from the farm to our processing facilities and warehouses. The milestone of turning our Amsterdam warehouse operation solar-powered is another example of how we’re not only progressing towards our own environmental goals but also supporting those of our customers and the national climate agendas of the Netherlands and the EU.”

 

Alec Gunn, CEO of Commodity Centre Group, said: “Our Group has been working closely with ofi for over 35 years, providing logistics and warehouse solutions in multiple locations. Commodity Centre’s Amsterdam Falcon and Osprey Terminals are shining examples of our continued commitment to incorporating sustainable solutions within our operations.”

 

Discover much more about what ofi has to offer at ofi.com

 

1 Cocoa beans with segregated traceability are sourced via a sustainability program, providing social and environmental support to farmers, and are kept separate from conventional cocoa beans.

2 Natural capital costs/accounting follows a holistic systems approach to understanding the true value of nature, people, and society for humans. It is an approach to measure the changes in the stock of natural capital at a variety of scales and to integrate the value of ecosystem services into accounting and reporting systems.

 

Articles Feb 5, 2024
Chocolate and Confectionery gets a sweet surprise across Europe

Author | Naveen Passani |

Technical Category Manager for Chocolate & Confectionery, ofi

 

Last year, freak weather patterns, global inflation and war have caused supply challenges and increased confectionery prices. Yet demand across Europe remained resilient. While the tough economic backdrop has led consumers to cut back on discretionary spending, many see chocolate as an affordable luxury they’re unwilling to give up.

 

That means intense competition for manufacturers looking to attract consumers’ attention in this category. One way to succeed is by tapping into the desire for adventure and developing products that use exotic or unusual flavors. So, building on our research into the emerging flavor profiles crossing continents, here are three chocolate and confectionery trends to watch right now.

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