• James Mayer takes the helm as new President of Danone UK & Ireland, as the organisation combines its category businesses – Specialised Nutrition, Plant-Based, Dairy, and Waters – into one unified business with one new leadership team. 
  • New structure will strengthen Danone UK & Ireland by bringing insights from across the business together, maximising expertise in each of the categories Danone operates in and boosting growth. The unified organisation will drive a more localised approach and growth agenda that can best respond to the changing needs of consumers and customers in UK & Ireland. 
  • Danone UK & Ireland reiterated its commitment to delivering health through food to as many people as possible through ‘One Planet. One Health’ framework. B Corp values stay core to the business as it strives to secure full B Corp certification for all its operations across the UK & Ireland.

Danone UK & Ireland today announces the appointment of James Mayer as the President of its newly implemented business structure. By bringing together four category businesses – Specialised Nutrition, Plant-Based, Dairy and Waters – into one unified company with one leadership team, Danone UK & Ireland will boost its growth opportunities by maximising insights and expertise across the business.

The changes are the culmination of Danone’s global Local First project, first announced in November 2020 to help deliver greater business impact and drive sustainable growth. The new structure will ensure that Danone UK & Ireland offers a more localised approach, enabling the business to best meet specific marketplace and consumer needs, and tap into developing growth spaces such as healthy ageing and plant-based alternatives.

Mayer takes the helm after more than 17 years at Danone, alongside a new leadership team of nine Vice Presidents bringing a wide range of insight. Previously Senior Vice President Specialised Nutrition for Europe and North America, Mayer brings expertise of managing and integrating divisions across 23 markets and leading a team of nine Zone General Managers. His prior roles at Danone have also included MD for the UK’s Early Life Nutrition business and Global Commercial Vice President Early Life Nutrition.

Danone’s best-known brands – including Alpro, Activia, Actimel, Evian, Harrogate, Volvic, Aptamil, and Cow & Gate – already cater to more than 316 million consumption moments in the UK and Ireland, with its Nutricia Homeward service also supporting around 30,000 patients[1]. With reach across a wide spectrum of channels from pharmacy to supermarkets to online, the brands are available in the places most frequented by consumers.

Danone UK & Ireland plans to build on this footprint and capitalise on growth opportunities by investing in its research, innovation, and digital capabilities, as well as brands, products, and services to further strengthen its market-leading position. Combining scientific and health expertise from around the world with strong local insights and top brands, Danone will continue to support healthy and sustainable lifestyles among consumers and patients in the UK & Ireland.

Danone is progressing towards full B Corp certification across all its legal entities in the UK & Ireland– with its Waters, Dairy, Alpro and Harrogate Water divisions already B Corp accredited. Danone is on track to certify all its operations around the globe as B Corp by 2025, which will make it one of the world’s biggest B Corps – demonstrating a proven commitment to using its business as a force for good.

James Mayer, President for Danone UK & Ireland said:

“This is an exciting time for Danone, and I’m incredibly proud to be leading the business into this new chapter. Danone’s strong family of much-loved brands already support the health of millions of consumers and patients across the UK & Ireland at every stage in their life. Bringing together our category expertise will enable us to explore existing growth areas, as well as maximising new opportunities like the plant-based sector. By seeking new ways to promote healthier diets, we will drive sustainable growth through an even stronger portfolio of purpose-driven products, brands and services.”

“Using our business as a force for good has always been in Danone’s DNA, and we remain committed to offering health through food for as many people as possible. Our ‘One Planet. One Health’ framework reflects our belief that the health of people and planet are interconnected – and we know we must continuously strive to empower consumers to make the best choices for themselves and the planet.”

[1] Kantar, Consumer Reach Points across Grocery & Baby, 52 w/e 13 Jun 21

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