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ekaterra Leadership

Pierre Labies

Pierre Labies

Chairperson
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Pierre Labies

Chairperson

Pierre is an accomplished CEO in the consumer brands space and an experienced Board Director. His career spans multiple global companies and he has acquired a strong reputation as a transformative leader focused on fundamentals and systemic change. He is recognized for his international mindset as well as his ability to consistently focus on teams’ alignment and engagement. Most recently he was the CEO of Coty Inc., a global leader in the beauty industry with a turnover of US$9b and 20,000 employees. Prior to this, Pierre was CEO of JDE, a privately-owned coffee company which he led from September 2013, overseeing its integration with the Mondelez coffee business in 2015. JDE is now established as a key player in the coffee industry with €5.5b sales and more than 15,000 employees. Before joining JDE, Pierre spent 25 years at Mars Inc. in multiple leadership roles across the world. In his last position he was CEO of Mars Global Petcare, a $14b business with 40,000 employees. An avid diver, motorbiker, and modern art amateur, Pierre holds a law degree from the university of Paris-La Sorbonne and an Economics and Finance degree from the Sciences-Po Paris. He has one son and lives with his partner Veronique in Amsterdam.

Pev Hooper

Pev Hooper

Supervisory Board Member
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Pev Hooper

Supervisory Board Member

Pev is a Partner of CVC Capital Partners having joined in 2004. He became a Director of ekaterra on 31 July 2022 when ekaterra was successfully acquired using funds managed by CVC. Before joining CVC, Pev worked for Citigroup and Schroders in their Mergers & Acquisitions departments. He has an MA degree from Oxford University.

Rachid Mohamed Rachid

Rachid Mohamed Rachid

Supervisory Board Member
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Rachid Mohamed Rachid

Supervisory Board Member

Rachid is a prominent business leader and former Minister of Trade, Industry & Investment for Egypt. He is the founder of Swiss-based Alsara Investment Group, a holding company that strategically invests in companies in creative industries in the United States, Europe and the Middle East, with a focus on luxury, wellness, design, innovation and technology. In addition to founding Alsara, Rachid is Chairman of both Valentino and Balmain, two of the world’s leading luxury fashion companies. He is the CEO of Mayhoola for Investment and a Board Member of the Katara Hospitality Group. A former President of Unilever North Africa, Middle East, Turkey and Member of Unilever’s Board of Directors, Rachid holds degrees from the University of Alexandria and Harvard Business School. He is the recipient of the Cavaliere di Gran Crose, Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana, the highest Order of Merit in Italy.

Nathalie Roos

Nathalie Roos

Chief Executive Officer
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Nathalie Roos

Chief Executive Officer

Nathalie is a French executive renowned for her international experience in the food industry at Kraft, Kronenbourg and Mars, and in cosmetics at L’Oréal. As CEO of ekaterra, Nathalie is driving the world’s biggest tea business to become the leader in sustainable tea production, farming and distribution methods, for the benefit of customers and communities. An expert in successfully growing FMCG companies, Nathalie prizes reinforcing the links between brands, their clients, and teams. In her previous role as a member of the Executive Committee and Managing Director of the Professional Products Division of L’Oréal, Nathalie carried out an in-depth transformation of the Division, adapting it for a digitally revolutionized market. Nathalie believes in constantly supporting the balance between her colleagues’ professional and personal lives to build a workplace environment that she calls a ‘Great Place to Win’, and promotes entrepreneurial spirit, commitment and ownership. In 2010, Nathalie was elected ‘Conseillère Régionale’ (Regional Council Member) of Alsace, to develop the region’s economy and employment market. She is a Board member of French dairy group BEL, and a non-executive director of Prêt-a-Manger. Nathalie is married to a dentist, Doctor Thierry Roos, and is the mother of three grown-up children. She is President of the charity Les Cigognes (created under Napoléon III) and on the Advisory Committee of NEOMA Business School, from which she graduated. Nathalie is also a Member of the European Advisory Board of Harvard Business School, and was awarded the Chevalier of the Legion d’Honneur – the highest distinction in France.

Jean-Remy Roussel

Jean-Remy Roussel

Supervisory Board
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Jean-Remy Roussel

Supervisory Board

Jean-Remy is a Managing Partner at CVC, having joined in 2008. Based in Luxembourg, he is head of the Operations team. Prior to joining CVC, Jean-Remy worked at TPG as a member of their operations team. Before TPG he worked at Mars Inc. in various operational and financial roles. Jean-Rémy holds a bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the University of Michigan and an MBA from Harvard Business School. He is a board member of several portfolio companies.

David Wells

David Wells

Supervisory Board Member
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David Wells

Supervisory Board Member

David is an investment professional at ekaterra’s parent company, CVC Capital Partners, having joined in 2009. He became a Director of ekaterra on 31 July 2022 when the acquisition of ekaterra by funds managed by CVC was successfully completed. Prior to joining CVC, David worked for OC&C Strategy Consultants.

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Nathalie Roos

Chief Executive Officer

Nathalie Roos

Chief Executive Officer
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Nathalie Roos

Chief Executive Officer

Nathalie is a French executive renowned for her international experience in the food industry at Kraft, Kronenbourg and Mars, and in cosmetics at L’Oréal. As CEO of ekaterra, Nathalie is driving the world’s biggest tea business to become the leader in sustainable tea production, farming and distribution methods, for the benefit of customers and communities. An expert in successfully growing FMCG companies, Nathalie prizes reinforcing the links between brands, their clients, and teams. In her previous role as a member of the Executive Committee and Managing Director of the Professional Products Division of L’Oréal, Nathalie carried out an in-depth transformation of the Division, adapting it for a digitally revolutionized market. Nathalie believes in constantly supporting the balance between her colleagues’ professional and personal lives to build a workplace environment that she calls a ‘Great Place to Win’, and promotes entrepreneurial spirit, commitment and ownership. In 2010, Nathalie was elected ‘Conseillère Régionale’ (Regional Council Member) of Alsace, to develop the region’s economy and employment market. She is a Board member of French dairy group BEL, and a non-executive director of Prêt-a-Manger. Nathalie is married to a dentist, Doctor Thierry Roos, and is the mother of three grown-up children. She is President of the charity Les Cigognes (created under Napoléon III) and on the Advisory Committee of NEOMA Business School, from which she graduated. Nathalie is also a Member of the European Advisory Board of Harvard Business School, and was awarded the Chevalier of the Legion d’Honneur – the highest distinction in France.

Jennifer Antczak

Jennifer Antczak

President – Australasia
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Jennifer Antczak

President – Australasia

Jennifer is a passionate, strategic, and purpose-led leader with more than 20 years’ experiences growing brands, people, and businesses. She has an outstanding track record of creating, accelerating, and turning around business results globally and locally in the USA and China. Known for authentic leadership, Jennifer achieves results by inspiring teams with clarity of vision, collaboration, and bias for action. A specialist in food and beverages, consumer packaged goods marketing, and general management, Jennifer’s successes span a diverse array of brands, geographies, and business challenges in multiple FMCG industries. Jennifer’s past roles include those of Global Vice President of Lipton, leading a €1.65 billion global brand transformation agenda; Marketing Director for Sun Products Corporation; and Brand Development Director for the Unilever ‘all’/Surf brands.

Sulaiman Ansari

Sulaiman Ansari

Head of Export & Distributor Markets
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Sulaiman Ansari

Head of Export & Distributor Markets

Sulaiman is a C-Suite business leader with over 20 years’ experience across North & Latin America, the Middle East and APAC regions. He has proven expertise in leading P&Ls to profitable growth for some of the worldʼs largest brands across both emerging and mature markets. Sulaiman takes pride in being a hands-on leader who can effectively manage multi-disciplinary teams to consistently deliver sustainable business growth. His leadership philosophy is founded on a growth mindset, allied with powerful communication skills; a belief in empowering teams; and a relentless passion for driving simplicity in business models. Prior to his role at ekaterra, Sulaiman was Unilever’s Managing Director of the Latin America region; Trade Marketing Manager of Gillette in the Gulf markets / Middle East region; and a Trade Marketing Manager for PepsiCo. He is a graduate of the Australian National University.

Abhiroop Chuckarbutty

Abhiroop Chuckarbutty

President - Africa, Middle East & Turkey
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Abhiroop Chuckarbutty

President - Africa, Middle East & Turkey

Abhiroop has over 18 years’ experience in FMCG industries across categories and functions throughout India, Southern Asia and the Gulf region. Since beginning his career at Unilever in 2004, he has gained a deep understanding of the Foods, Refreshments, Beauty and Personal Care categories, including the customer segments within each of them. With strengths in P&L Management for complex, multi-brand businesses, and in product and marketing mix creation and deployment, Abhiroop is an expert in product, packaging and communication development, as well as in media planning, execution and go-to-market strategies for distribution. He is passionate about doing business by ‘doing right for people and planet’. With a decisive and inclusive leadership style, he uses technology as a change catalyst, fostering a culture of experiment, learn and scale. Abhiroop gains particular satisfaction from seeing team members realize their potential, and the business unlock further growth. Abhiroop holds a BA in Economics from St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, and an MBA from the Xavier Institute of Management.

Bruno Laine

Bruno Laine

Chief Supply Chain Officer
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Bruno Laine

Chief Supply Chain Officer

Bruno has more than 20 years’ experience in Supply Chain roles, having joined Unilever in 1999. He has served as the Chief Supply Chain Officer for ekaterra since 2021. Bruno has worked across multiple product categories including Food, Personal Care, Home Care, Ice Cream and Tea. As well as a strong track record in Supply Chain, Bruno has held positions as a Factory Director and worked as a Production Manager for Lever Fabergé. He is a graduate of the University of Duisburg-Essen and of Icam.

Zbigniew Lewicki

Zbigniew Lewicki

Chief Research & Development and Sustainability Officer
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Zbigniew Lewicki

Chief Research & Development and Sustainability Officer

Zbigniew ‘Zibi’ Lewicki is Chief R&D and Sustainability Officer at ekaterra, with a mission to enable regenerative growth. His personal purpose is to build regenerative food systems and create activist teams. He is a great believer in combining science and nature in order to unleash the power of plants to create the word of wellbeing for people and planet. As a Board Member of the Ethical Tea Partnership, Zibi is helping shape the 2030 Tea Industry Roadmap. Over the last 25 years, Zibi has worked in various parts of the world across food and beverages categories including 13 years of tea category experiences across SC, R&D and ESG. He has successfully built teams which have driven growth through award-winning innovations in tea, ice cream and food, transform brand portfolios towards healthier, more sustainable products. Zibi is married with two daughters. Outside ekaterra, he is involved in a number of sustainability start-ups. He enjoys trialling sustainable practices on his own farm in northern Poland.

Laraine Miller

Laraine Miller

President – Americas
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Laraine Miller

President – Americas

Laraine is a results-driven general manager with a proven track record of growing highly successful brands, leading breakthrough launches and creating business turnarounds through her 20+ years’ experience in consumer goods brand management across a range of categories. A believer in collaborative leadership, Laraine is skilled at simplifying complex business issues and setting priorities to build high-performing teams. Laraine is passionate about understanding consumer psychology and translating insights into problem-solving that benefits the top and bottom line. Her experience both client and agency-side spans roles at Unilever, General Mills, Sterling Brands, and Young & Rubicam, as well as leadership in entrepreneurial start-up ventures. Laraine earned her MBA from Harvard Business School and her undergraduate degree from The University of Virginia.

Kadri Ozen

Kadri Ozen

Chief Communications & Corporate Affairs Officer
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Kadri Ozen

Chief Communications & Corporate Affairs Officer

A passionate believer in the power of communication to make a positive impact, Kadri has more than 20 years’ experience leading external affairs, communications and sustainability teams at regional and global level. Before joining ekaterra in 2021, Kadri built and led the corporate affairs and communications team for Upfield across the EMEA region. An expert in uniting stakeholders around a shared purpose, Kadri is proud to have led the private sector partnership portfolio of UNDP; helped shape the sustainability and foundation strategy of Coca-Cola; guided the women’s empowerment framework for Merck; and established the European Alliance for Plant Based Foods at Upfield. Kadri trained as a Medical Doctor, and holds an MBA from Emory University in Atlanta, USA. He initially pursued a dual career as a certified family physician and TV journalist, working for CNN World Report and the BBC. Kadri lives in Amsterdam with his wife and two daughters. He is passionate about travelling, and has visited more than 70 countries, with a goal of exploring 100.

Farheen Salman

Farheen Salman

President – Bangladesh, Sri Lanka & Pakistan
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Farheen Salman

President – Bangladesh, Sri Lanka & Pakistan

As the President for Bangladesh, Sri Lanka & Pakistan (‘BSPAN’) and General Manager, Pakistan, for ekaterra, Farheen leads a business of over € 200 million, employing over 300 people in the region. One of the youngest female CEOs of a major global brand, Farheen joined ekaterra’s precursor, Unilever in 1999. Since then she has led a diverse set of categories during her career including Personal Care, Ice Cream, Food and Beverages. Before her appointment to the board of Unilever Pakistan in 2016, Farheen was Ice Cream Brand Development Director for North Africa & Middle East. Farheen has helped recraft three diverse portfolios: Lipton & Brooke Bond Tea, Knorr Foods and Wall’s Ice Cream. Farheen gained her BBA and MBA from the Institute of Business Administration. She prides herself on unapologetically living her purpose that ‘women can achieve corporate leadership without compromising on a well-balanced family life.’

Aparna Sundaresh

Aparna Sundaresh

Chief Marketing Officer
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Aparna Sundaresh

Chief Marketing Officer

Aparna is a global marketeer and executive leader who believes in the power of brands and culture to drive business results. Her career is defined by creation, transformation and learning – building brands, forging partnerships, transforming channel programs and pioneering innovation. She is passionate about building purposeful, sustainable brands and believes that business can be a force for good. Creating connected and empowered cultures has always been at the heart of Aparna’s career journey. Inspired by diverse cross-cultural experiences, she leads global marketing and digital strategy for ekaterra’s €2bn tea business with leading brand positions across 50 markets. She drives portfolio transformation by crafting brands consumers love, including Lipton, Pukka, Tazo, T2, PG tips and many more. Aparna is in charge of accelerating growth channels such as e-commerce and out-of-home. This includes enabling digital transformation with a data-first mindset that unlocks creativity at every customer touchpoint. Aparna is Chair of the Pukka board and a board member of T2, contributing to the end-to-end management of these two premium ekaterra B-Corp brands.

Wendela van Uchelen

Wendela van Uchelen

Chief Legal Officer
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Wendela van Uchelen

Chief Legal Officer

Wendela is a boardroom professional in governance, sustainability and law with expertise in the private and public sectors. An international executive with broad global and cross-cultural experience, her skills have evolved over three decades working in multiple cultures and industries. A talented change agent, Wendela is adepts in creating legal frameworks to align teams towards business solutions. She believes that through integrated working, corporates can help create a better world by creating synergies among companies, their people, products and services. Wendela’s career spans public and civil interests, and sustainable causes. As General Counsel of the Dutch national rail company NS, and APG (which serves the pension entitlements of five million households), Wendela has worked with, and from within, the corporate world across several continents. Building on her deep legal experience, she has also undertaken board advisory work on steering companies effectively and sustainably. Wendela has a degree in Law from the University of Amsterdam and spent a year at the University of Cambridge as a Chevening Scholar. She later gained an MBA from INSEAD. In her spare time, Wendela loves making art, playing tennis and sailing with her husband Jan, a classical flute player.

Karel Vandamme

Karel Vandamme

President – Europe
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Karel Vandamme

President – Europe

Ex-CEO of Pukka Herbs, Karel is an experienced executive leader on a mission to serve and support a purpose-led business community that can thrive in todayʼs world. He is a creative, purpose-led, and inspiring strategic thinker with a consistently positive track record in senior leadership roles in leading FMCG companies and in scale-up environments. Driven by a belief in the positive potential of businesses, he inspires teams for the good of customers and the living world. Karel leads by example, through thriving entrepreneurship and constructive collaboration to create flourishing company cultures. A passionate business- and mission builder, he has expertise in rich marketing-mixes, multiple go-to-market models, complex portfolio management, business transformation, team building and talent development. He is also a skilled and energetic communicator; confident decision-taker; and expert is cross-cultural stakeholder management. As well as being President of ekaterra Europe, Karel has non-executive experience as Chair of the trade association, NVC; a member of the Pukka board; and also of the Pukka Mission Council. Karel holds a Masters degree in Economics from the Lessius Hogeschool, Antwerp.

Bas Verberg

Bas Verberg

Chief People Officer
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Bas Verberg

Chief People Officer

As ekaterra’s Chief People Officer, Bas believes in achieving results by having a clear strategic vision in order to drive individual and organizational change. He became Chief People Officer of ekaterra in July 2022, after 18 months as Chief People Officer of Unilever’s Tea division. Previously, as HR Director for Unilever’s European Supply Chain, Bas was responsible for the end-to-end supply chain talent agenda in Europe, overseeing a team of over 700 managers. A specialist in organisational change, Bas led the move of Unilever’s global Foods category leadership team from Rotterdam into London. Bas joined Unilever in 2003 after graduating with a Master of Science degree in Physics from Leiden University. He lives in Delft in the Netherlands with his wife and three children.