Marico in top management shuffle; Mariwala stepping down as MD

Marico promoter and CMD Harsh Mariwala is stepping down as the managing director of home-grown FMCG major, passing the baton to the current chief executive Saugata Gupta, as part of a top management shuffle. Mariwala, however, remains an executive director and the chairman of the firm.

At the same time, Marico’s CFO and long timer Milind Sarwate has resigned from the firm to pursue new opportunities with effect from March 31, 2014, as per a stock market disclosure.

Sarwate, who joined Marico in 1998 as CFO, drove Marico’s inorganic growth agenda through acquisitions and alliances, in India and overseas. In his 16-year tenure at Marico, he also played a role in corporate social responsibility agenda (Marico Innovation Foundation) and contributed to conceptualisation of Ascent—the non-profit organisation set up by Harsh Mariwala—to accelerate the growth of the enterprise.

“I take this opportunity to acknowledge Milind’s role in Marico’s transformation from an Indian company, now poised to become an emerging markets MNC," said Mariwala.

Sarwate said, “I have had a long and fulfilling innings with Marico, during which I grew, both, as a professional and as an individual leader. After 16 long years, I sense the need to rejuvenate myself through new challenges in a new setting, to build further on my experience. I have, therefore, planned to take up a new role. I will announce details in the new financial year.”

Sarwate started his career with Aventis and prior to joining Marico, he worked with Godrej Sara Lee Ltd and Godrej Consumer Products Ltd. He obtained his B Com (Hons) from University of Mumbai.

New MD

Meanwhile, the firm elevated Saugata Gupta, currently the CEO of Marico, as the new MD. As part of the new structure all business heads and group level functions will report to Gupta.

Gupta joined Marico in January 2004 as head of marketing and after three years in 2007, he was elevated as CEO of the company's India business.

Prior to joining Marico, he was chief of marketing and group sales at ICICI Prudential. Gupta started his career with Cadbury's where he spent nine years in various roles in sales and marketing in India and the UK.

Gupta has 20 years of experience primarily in the FMCG sector and has an engineering degree from IIT Kharagpur and is an alumnus of IIM Bangalore.

The change of guard comes one year after the firm announced the merger of its fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) units while bringing the beauty and wellness business under a separate listed firm Marico Kaya Enterprises Ltd (MaKE).

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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