JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA — The chairman and board of Tiger Brands Limited announced on Oct. 8 that the group’s chief executive officer (CEO), Peter Matlare, has reached agreement with them regarding his decision to step down as CEO. Matlare will remain in his position as CEO until Dec. 31.
“The board recognizes and appreciates the contribution made by Matlare as chief executive officer over the past seven years and we are grateful to him for his focused leadership in steering the company to date” said, André Parker, chairman of the Tiger Brands board.
While the company gave no reason why Maltare is stepping down, Tiger Brands has faced major write-offs in its Nigerian business and fraud at its Kenyan operations.
In 2012, Tiger Brands bought a majority stake in Dangote Flour Mills, a Nigerian flour, pasta and rice company, for $152 million. This purchase has costs investors millions in write-downs due to competitive markets. In late 2014, Matlare said that he took "full responsibility" for the write-downs.
In addition, executives at Haco Industries, the company’s Kenyan subsidiary, overstated sales in 2014 to reach operational targets. Preinvoicing and manipulation of profits contributed to a 30% drop in operating profit in the international and export unit during the first half of the year ended March 31.
"I have given this careful consideration and believe that this is the right time for new leadership at Tiger Brands,” Matlare said. “I am proud of the progress we have made since my appointment. Our business model is more resilient, we are more disciplined on cost management, and we have introduced key strategies that will improve our positon locally and on the rest of the continent. While the external environment has continued to be, and will remain, challenging, the group has the resilience to overcome these challenges. In addition we have defined our culture through a common set of values for the group and the progress we have made, has been achieved by applying these values and by focusing on the needs of all our stakeholders. I wish to thank the leadership team as well as the employees of Tiger Brands for their commitment and support over the years. I value the guidance and support received from the Board during my tenure.”
The board has begun the process to find a new CEO.