ZAMBIA – Leading Zambia-based agribusiness and food manufacturer and retailer Zambeef Products has announced that its Joint Chief Executive Officer Dr. Carl Irwin will retire from the business in March 2018, as part of a restructuring exercise of its top executive managers.

Dr. Irwin founded Zambeef in 1994 together with Francis Grogan, who will take over the CEO role on a temporary basis.

“I have greatly enjoyed my 23 years with Zambeef and my decision to retire has not been an easy one. Earlier this year, I notified the board of my wish to spend more time with my family, said Dr. Irwin

“I look forward to watching Zambeef continue to grow and be a national champion driving Zambian agricultural products into the wider SADC/COMESA region. It has been a privilege to be involved with Zambeef for the last 23 years.”

Tim Pollock, Investment Director for Food & Agriculture for CDC Group, has resigned from CDC and will join Zambeef on January 1, 2018, initially as Group Managing Director.

He will subsequently take over the Joint Chief Executive Officer role from March 31, 2018, taking over Dr. Irwin’s role after appropriate regulatory approvals.

Pollock, who has been a Non-Executive Director of Zambeef since September 2016, has over 35 years of experience across the food and agribusiness sectors in both operational, leadership and strategic roles at Cargill, Grainfamers, Armajaro and Lallemand.

CDC holds 17.5 percent of Zambeef Product’s ordinary share capital.

From a small butchery business in Zambia, Zambeef has grown into a multi-national conglomerate under the guidance of Dr. Irwin and Grogan.

It is currently one of the largest and most successful Zambian companies, with operations beyond the region, in Ghana and Nigeria, and export markets to a number of African countries.

“On behalf of shareholders, employees and the Board, I would like to thank Carl Irwin for his outstanding contribution to Zambeef over the past 23 years.

He, along with Francis Grogan, co-founded the business and it has been through their vision, entrepreneurial drive and leadership that Zambeef has grown to become a market- leading and respected Zambian and Southern African business,” said Zambeef Chairman Dr Jacob Mwanza.

According to Dr. Mwanza, Dr. Irwin and Grogan presided over key milestones that have helped grow the company into one of the region’s greatest success stories, with 197 retail outlets throughout Zambia and West Africa and more than 7,000 employees.

The joint CEOs were also important in the dual stock exchange listings of the company’s shares in Zambia and London.

They were also instrumental in driving Zambeef’s investment of US$101 million in the last five years to develop Zambeef’s operations into world-class operations.

Dr. Irwin’s departure follows a 9-month leadership succession planning process by the company’s Board assisted by an external Human Resources consultant.

The company has also announced that Mike Lovett, General Manager of the Cropping Division, has been appointed Chief Operations Officer and Director of Agriculture,

Further, Walter Roodt, General Manager of the company’s Novatek Stockfeed Division, has been appointed Deputy Managing Director

He will also lead the implementation across the Cold Chain Foods Division of a food safety management system and certification to ISO standards.