NORWAY – Orkla, the Norwegian branded consumer goods conglomerate has appointed Jaan Ivar Semlitsch as the firm’s new President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), effective 1 December.

He succeeds Peter A. Ruzicka, who left the company on May 7 and was replaced by Terje Andersen who has served as acting President and CEO.

Jaan joins Orkla from Dixons Carphone Plc, where he has been CEO of Elkjop Nordic for more than six years.

For the past year, he has also been in charge and CEO of Dixons Carphone’s International operations.

He served as CEO of Rema Industrier from 2009 to 2013 and as CEO of Plantasjen from 2007 to 2009 and was chief operating officer at Statoil Retail Europe from 2004 to 2007.

From 2001 to 2004, he was CEO of Expert Denmark and worked for McKinsey & Company as a consultant on assignments for a range of companies in the grocery sector.

“I am pleased that Jaan Ivar Semlitsch has accepted the position,” said Orkla Board Chairman Stein Erik Hagen.

“He has 24 years of broad management experience from Nordic and international companies and has been a highly successful chief executive of several companies.

“The board has unanimously concluded that Jaan Ivar is the right person to lead Orkla in the coming years.”

Jaan holds an economics degree from the Norwegian School of Economics and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management.

He is also a director of DnB and Brav Norway (formerly Swix Sport).

Commenting on his appointment, Jaan, said: “I am very grateful for the opportunity to lead Orkla into a new and exciting phase of the group’s development.

“I want to build on Orkla’s strong existing positions in various markets and foster the company’s continued growth and expansion.”

Orkla, which reported US$4.70 billion (NOK 41 billion) is a leading supplier of branded consumer goods for the out-of-home and bakery segments in the Nordic region, employing approximately 18,500 people.

The company recently acquired Swedish supplier of bakery ingredients Zeelandia, expanding its market presence in the Nordic region.

It has also moved its headquarters to a new building in Oslo, Norway where it will house all its business units.