Tue | May 26, 2020

GK management changes aimed at achieving goal of a $100b company

Published:Thursday | January 17, 2019 | 12:00 AM
Don Whby, Group CEO of GraceKennedy Limited.


GraceKennedy said it has made a number of changes at its senior management level as it continues to streamline its structure in alignment with its 100th anniversary objectives.

The changes, effective April 1, form part of an ongoing transformation process announced by the company in August last year, the company said in a release. GraceKennedy will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2022.

GraceKennedy's current group comptroller, Andrew Messado, who has been working with the company for 20 years, will be appointed group chief financial officer, CFO.

Current CFO Frank James will assume the role of CEO for the Domestic Foods Division. He will have responsibility for GK'smanufacturing, distribu-tion and retail markets in Jamaica, spanning Grace Foods & Services, World Brands, Consumer Brands, Hi-Lo Food Stores and GK's six factories islandwide. James will replace Ryan Mack, who goes on retirement in March.

Lee-Anne Bruce will be appointed chief compliance officer for the GraceKennedy Group and will report to the Group CEO, Don Wehby.

According to Wehby, "this change in the area of compliance is reflective of GraceKennedy's continuing commitment to having a best-in-class compliance framework, which we know will give us a competitive advantage".

Along with Frank James' appointment as head of the Domestic Foods Division, other senior management changes will be effected both locally and in the overseas food division.

On the sales and distribution side, Tamara Thompson, current general manager for both World Brands Services and Consumer Brands, will be appointed general manager for Grace Foods & Services, while Magion Stephenson will be appointed deputy general manager.

Thompson will retain responsibility for Consumer Brands Limited, while current general manager of Hi-Lo, RenÈe Nathan, will replace her as general manager of World Brands. Nathan will be succeeded by Cathrine Kennedy, who is being appointed general manager for the company's chain of 13 supermarkets islandwide.

In the overseas market, in addition to retaining his position as president, Grace Foods - Canada, Lucky Lankage will be appointed chief operating officer for international foods. Lankage will also assume responsibility for Belize and Latin America and the Caribbean.

In addition to her current role as CEO of the GraceKennedy Financial Group, GKFG, Grace Burnett will assume the position of president and CEO of GraceKennedy Money Services, GKMS, which encompasses the brands Western Union, Bill Express and FX Trader. Current GKMS head Michelle Allen will retire at the end of March.

Steven Whittingham will be appointed chief operating officer of GKFG, and assumes direct responsibility for GK's insurance business locally and regionwide, while retaining responsibility for GK Capital Management. Current general manager of GK General Insurance Andrew Leo-Rhynie will be appointed managing director of GK Capital Management, with Chaluk Richards assuming the general manager position at GK Insurance. Tammara Glaves-Hucey, while retaining her current role at GK Insurance, will also assume the role of general manager of GK Insurance Eastern Caribbean.

According to Mr Wehby, "We are extremely optimistic about the future of this great company and are confident that we have the right strategy, resources and, most importantly, the people to achieve our goal of being a J$100-billion company by 2022, while remaining true to our values of honesty, integrity and trust."