Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 23 January 2020

Saudi's Almarai appoints new chief executive

Deputy CEO Majed Nofal to replace Georges Schorderet next month

Almarai reported a 16 per cent drop in its fourth quarter net profit. Sammy Dallal / The National 
Almarai reported a 16 per cent drop in its fourth quarter net profit. Sammy Dallal / The National 

Saudi Arabia's consumer goods company Almarai appointed Majed Nofal as its chief executive on Monday.

The company, which is the biggest producer of dairy products in the Middle East, said Mr Nofal will take over from Georges Schorderet from January 1.

Having been with the company for a number of years, Mr Nofal initially worked as chief financial officer of Western Bakeries Company (known as L'Usine) for seven years and then as chief executive after the company was acquired by Almarai. He was subsequently appointed as head of procurement, general manager for new business and as chief financial officer, before being appointed deputy CEO in July.

"In line with our plans, Mr. Georges P. Schorderet will handover on 31st December 2019, and continue to serve as an advisor to the board of directors," Almarai said in a statement to the Saudi stock exchange, where its shares trade.

In a separate announcement, the company said it would propose a final dividend of 0.85 Saudi riyals (Dh0.83) per share, or a payout of about 8.5 per cent, for its 2019 financial year. A date for the payment will be announced after it receives approval from shareholders.

Mr Shorderet stepped back in to the chief executive role in July, having previously retired from the company, following the abrupt resignation of Alois Hofbauer, who had only taken up his post in April this year but then stepped back from the role for personal reasons.

The company made a profit attributable to shareholders of 581 million riyals in the third quarter. This was an 8.5 per cent decline on the same period a year earlier, despite a 7.7 per cent increase in revenue to 3.57 billion riyals. Profit for the nine-month period was down 8.6 per cent at 1.5 bn riyals, although revenue grew 4.6 per cent to 10.6 bn riyals.

The company made more than 60 per cent of its revenue in the quarter from dairy products, with the remainder coming from its fruit juices and bakery arms.

Updated: December 9, 2019 02:39 PM

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