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Fonterra executive Caldwell quits

Fonterra Cooperative Group managing director of people, culture and services, Chris Caldwell, has left the job after just 18 months in the role, citing personal reasons.

Caldwell's responsibilities have been handed over to chief financial officer Lukas Paravicini with immediate effect, Fonterra said in a short statement. Those tasks include programmes to enhance Fonterra's culture, lead the development of staff, and ensure "the group's internal services are run efficiently and effectively to best serve the needs of our businesses and teams," according to Fonterra's website.

His resignation ends five years with the company, where he was appointed MD director of people, culture and services in May last year, having previously been general manager of finance.

Caldwell was one of 12 direct reports to chief executive Theo Spierings, who expanded the management team to create a flatter structure with a greater regional focus.

The exit comes as Fonterra re-gathers itself after the global threat to its reputation when an unfounded food scare in August prompted a precautionary recall.

Fonterra's board-sanctioned inquiry into the scare found Fonterra's handling of the fall-out was "inadequate" for the kind and size of the crisis and the company's lack of responsiveness to external stakeholders the result of its "fortress" mentality.

The dairy exporter is holding its annual meeting in Edendale tomorrow, and unitholders in the Fonterra Shareholders' Fund will have their annual meeting next Monday in Auckland.

Units in the fund slipped 0.3 percent to $6.54 today.


Comments and questions

Fonterra is obviously in a mess.
Not only did they panic and destroy the company's-and New Zealand's reputations unnecessarily before they had the facts,but they are now spending time and effort on a magnificent head office building when they should be attending to operational matters.
Then there is the matter of many highly-paid executives?
Time for the farmer shareholders to find out just what's going on?
paleo martin

Why the hell would you put a bean counter in charge of people development?

The only worse thing you could do is to put them in the charge of ICT, which too many companies in NZ do.

In both cases it is because directors lack the skills themselves to understand these two important areas of a company's business - the two areas that can deliver sustainable competitive advantage.

You obviously have never meet Caldwell nor have any idea of his global experience. Most NZ HR is ex IR in drag pretending to be business people. Fonterra has invested big time in talent & OD. ICT needs business not technical leadership - proven fact

Actually the function of HR is purely process oriented. People development is a line managers responsibility. Don't get the two confused.