USA – Poultry company Pilgrim’s Pride has appointed Fabio Sandri as the company’s president and CEO, effective immediately, following the departure of Jayson Penn amid legal matters.
Sandri was appointed interim president and CEO in June this year as it was announced that Penn had begun a paid leave of absence to focus on his defense, having been charged over alleged US chicken price-fixing. Pilgrim’s Pride has now announced that Penn is no longer with the company.
The Justice Department indicted Mr. Penn and three other poultry industry executives in early June, in what the government said was a long-running effort to fix prices and rig bidding in chicken supply negotiations with restaurant chains.
Executives at Pilgrim’s, Claxton Poultry Farms and other chicken companies shared information on their own prices and that of competitors through phone calls and text messages as they negotiated with restaurant chicken buyers, the department said. All of the defendants pleaded not guilty.
“I look forward to working alongside our strong team of professionals around the globe who are committed to realising Pilgrim’s vision to be the best and most respected company in our industry.”Fabio Sandri – President and CEO, Pilgrim’s Pride
Mr. Penn, who had been paid during his three-month leave of absence, became chief executive officer in 2019 after the retirement of Pilgrim’s prior CEO. He started working at the Colorado-based company in March 2011 and previously headed its commercial business group and oversaw sales and operations.
Mr. Sandri became the company’s CFO in 2011. He previously served as finance chief of Estacio Participações, the private postsecondary educational institution in Brazil, and Imbra SA, a São Paulo-based provider of dental services.
“I am humbled and excited to be selected by the board to lead Pilgrim’s in our next stage of growth and opportunity for our team members,” said Sandri.
“I look forward to working alongside our strong team of professionals around the globe who are committed to realising Pilgrim’s vision to be the best and most respected company in our industry.”
Prior to his new position, Sandri served as chief financial officer (CFO) of Pilgrim’s Pride, a role he took up in June 2011.
He is also the former CFO of Estacio Participações, a private post-secondary educational institution in Brazil, and former corporate controller of Braskem, a Brazilian petrochemical company.
The company said it has initiated a search process to identify a new CFO to replace Sandri.
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