LONDON, June 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Avon Products, Inc. (NYSE: AVP) today announced the appointment of Jonathan Myers as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, effective September 1. This completes the series of planned executive leadership changes that have been taking place in recent months, as Avon ensures it has the leadership team in place to accelerate the next chapter of the transformation journey to sustainable profitable growth. Jonathan will be responsible for ensuring Avon's Representatives have a seamless and competitive experience, with consumer relevant products, tools that make it easy to do business, and outstanding service. He will assume leadership of Avon's Brand Marketing and Product Research & Development, Digital, Information Technology and Global Supply Chain. Jonathan will report directly to Avon's Chief Executive Officer, Sheri McCoy, and he will be based at Avon's headquarters in London.
Jonathan brings to Avon significant operational and management experience in global markets, including emerging markets. He has expertise in executing growth strategies, integrating teams and managing a complex and diverse range of customers and channels. At both Kellogg and Procter & Gamble, he led major brand and product programs to drive innovation, while pioneering ecommerce capabilities in China and the UK to increase awareness and trial of new products and categories. He also oversaw the rapid expansion of manufacturing capacity to support business growth in China, alongside implementing new supply and demand forecasting across different businesses and markets globally.
Most recently, Jonathan served as Kellogg's Vice President, Western European Markets, and Managing Director, UK and Ireland, where he successfully built the business and strengthened the organization, including delivering accelerated sales growth on the acquired Pringles business. Prior to Kellogg, Jonathan had a successful 20-year career at Procter & Gamble, serving in various leadership roles, including General Manager, Oral Care and Feminine Care, China, where he significantly grew market share. Earlier in his career at P&G, Jonathan had extensive experience working on a range of Beauty Care businesses. Jonathan holds a Bachelor of Arts and Masters in History at St. John's College, Cambridge University.
Building out the leadership team to execute Avon's three year strategic growth plan represents the achievement of an important part of the transformation journey. During 2016, Avon created the platform for the future growth of the business. It entered into a strategic partnership with affiliates of Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. that involved a $435 million investment in Avon and separation of Avon's North America business into a privately-held company, majority-owned and managed by Cerberus. It also reduced balance sheet leverage, extended the maturity of the debt portfolio, and achieved $180 million of annualized savings. In 2017, the Company moved the corporate headquarters to the UK, and the growth plans have been refined and the key enablers to drive change are being put in place.
The company has been making broad-based changes to its leadership team and last week announced the appointment of Miguel Fernandez as Global President responsible for Commercial Business Operations, who will join from Herbalife where he was Executive Vice President and Managing Director for the Americas and Worldwide Member Operations. In addition, the company recently announced the appointment of James Thompson who will join as Avon's General Counsel and Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer, having previously served as Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary to Chiquita Brands International, Inc. In January, Jamie Wilson joined as Chief Financial Officer, having previously held the position of Chief Finance Officer of SABMiller.
Chan Galbato, Chairman of Avon, commented, "Our Board and management team, under Sheri McCoy's leadership, are committed to the turnaround of Avon's business and are continuing to ensure the business executes on its strategic plan to create consistent, sustainable and profitable growth. This latest appointment completes the executive team required to take Avon onto the next stage of the journey."
Sheri McCoy, Chief Executive Officer of Avon said, "Jonathan's appointment and the other executive leadership appointments we have recently announced ensure we have the strong, seasoned leadership team in place to drive and accelerate the pace of change in the next chapter of our journey to profitable growth. During 2016, we established the basis for our transformation, separating the North American business, strengthening our balance sheet and driving out cost. In 2017, we've refined our growth roadmap and put in place the enablers to drive the necessary changes to achieve our stated long-term financial goals."
Jonathan Myers commented, "I am delighted to be joining Avon at such a critical time in the Company's transformation. With a 130-year history, the largest global representative network and leadership positions across a number of key markets and categories, Avon is positioned as one of the world's premier beauty brands. I look forward to working alongside Sheri and the new Avon leadership team to deliver sustainable growth by expanding our network, digitizing our operations and leveraging our dynamic portfolio of market-leading products."
Fernando J. Acosta, Avon's Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing and Social Selling Officer, has decided not to relocate to the UK and will therefore be leaving the Company, November 1st 2017. Fernando joined Avon in 2011 as Senior Vice President and President Latin America, responsible for driving sales and profit in the region. Throughout his tenure, Fernando has made significant contributions to the business, including the development and launch of the new Beauty for a Purpose positioning that has helped increase word of mouth, offline and online; enhancing Avon's innovation program; and developing the Company's approach to digital social selling to connect Representatives with consumers.
James S. Scully, Avon's current Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, will be leaving the Company October 1st 2017, following his previously announced decision not to relocate to London. Since joining in 2015, Jim has been instrumental in navigating the Company through a series of transactions, in refinancing its debt, extending its debt maturity profile and strengthening its balance sheet, while helping define Avon's Transformation Plan.
McCoy added, "I know I speak for the entire Avon management team and the Board in expressing our sincere appreciation to both Jim and Fernando for their dedication and service to Avon. We are extremely grateful for their leadership and contributions to the Company's strategic vision and transformation initiatives, and wish them both all the best."
About Avon Products, Inc.
Avon is the Company that for 130 years has proudly stood for beauty, innovation, optimism and, above all, women. Avon products include well-recognized and beloved brands such as ANEW, Avon Color, Avon Care, Skin-So-Soft, and Advance Techniques sold through nearly 6 million active independent Avon Sales Representatives.
Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains "forward-looking statements" that are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including turnaround of the Company's business, achieving its stated long-term financial goals, the execution of its strategic plan to create consistent, sustainable and profitable growth, and its planned executive changes. Because forward-looking statements inherently involve risks and uncertainties, actual future results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the possibility of business disruption, competitive uncertainties, and general economic and business conditions in Avon's markets as well as the other risks detailed in Avon's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Avon undertakes no obligation to update any statements in this press release for changes that happen after the date of this release.
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SOURCE Avon Products, Inc.