UK  — Consumer goods company Unilever has announced changes to its organisational model to enhance its ability to quickly respond to market demands. 

The changes will see the company move away from its current matrix structure and will be organised around five distinct Business Groups: Beauty & Wellbeing, Personal Care, Home Care, Nutrition, and Ice Cream.  

Under the new structure, each Business Group will be fully responsible and accountable for their strategy, growth, and profit delivery globally, the company said. 

The five Business Groups will however be supported by Unilever Business Operations, which will provide the technology, systems, and processes to drive operational excellence across the business.  

“Our new organisational model has been developed over the last year and is designed to continue the step-up we are seeing in the performance of our business,” Alan Jope, CEO Unilever, explains. 

“Moving to five category-focused Business Groups will enable us to be more responsive to consumer and channel trends, with crystal-clear accountability for delivery. Growth remains our top priority and these changes will underpin our pursuit of this.” 

New appointments and thousands of job cuts 

As part of the reorganization, Hanneke Faber, current president of Foods & Refreshment, has been named president of the Nutrition unit, which will include brands focused on cooking, snacking, functional nutrition, plant-based meat, and food solutions. 

Matt Close, currently executive vice president of Ice Cream has been appointed president of the business unit which owns brands such as Ben & Jerry’s, Breyers, Magnum, and Talenti.  

Within the new central hub, Reginaldo Ecclissato, current chief supply chain officer, will lead the supply chain and Unilever business operations as chief business operations officer.  

Nitin Paranjpe, chief operating officer, will take on a new role as chief transformation officer and chief people officer, leading the business transformation, and heading human resources. 

However, it’s not all joy at Unilever as the exercise is expected to lead to a 15% reduction in senior management roles and a 5% reduction in junior management roles. 

 The company said it did not expect the layoffs, which will number about 1,500 in total, to affect factory teams. 

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