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Brenntag redesigns Board of Management and creates new governance model for its two divisions according to its Strategy to Win

  • As of August 1, 2023, the Management Board of Brenntag SE will consist of four members
  • Ewout van Jarwaarde appointed as CEO Brenntag Essentials, succeeding Steven Terwindt who has chosen not to extend his contract with Brenntag ending July 31, 2023
  • Michael Friede, COO Brenntag Specialties, to become CEO Brenntag Specialties as of August 1, 2023
  • New governance and steering structure to be introduced for both global Brenntag divisions as of January 2024, including the two future Specialties reporting segments Life Science and Material Science
  • New divisional setup to create incrementally more independent, autonomous, and market-leading businesses to accelerate strategy implementation

Brenntag, the global market leader in chemicals and ingredients distribution, continues to develop its governance and organizational structures, both for the Group and the two Brenntag divisions. As of August 1, 2023, the Management Board of Brenntag SE will consist of four members: Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Brenntag Group Christian Kohlpaintner, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Brenntag Group Kristin Neumann as well as of two divisional CEOs. Ewout van Jarwaarde, current Chief Transformation Officer (CTO), has been appointed by the Supervisory Board of Brenntag SE to lead the Brenntag Essentials division as CEO Brenntag Essentials as of August 1, 2023. Michael Friede will continue to lead the Specialties division and accordingly will become CEO Brenntag Specialties by the same date.

“Brenntag has reached a point in its transformation where it is all about execution and implementing the strategy along our clearly laid out roadmap,” says Christian Kohlpaintner, CEO Brenntag Group. “Brenntag is fully focused on delivering against its four-pillar ‘Strategy to Win’ composed by our Divisional Strategies, Sustainability, M&A, and our Digital.Data.Excellence program. As our conceptual work is completed, Project Brenntag is successfully executed and as we are moving to clear line responsibilities to execute our strategy, we have decided to discontinue the CTO role established in the beginning of 2021 on board level. Assigning the responsibilities to the various board members, allows us to move to a four-member board now.”

Ewout van Jarwaarde to lead the Brenntag Essentials division

Ewout van Jarwaarde, newly appointed CEO Brenntag Essentials, is succeeding Steven Terwindt, current Chief Operating Officer Brenntag Essentials, who has chosen not to extend his contract with Brenntag ending July 31, 2023.

Richard Ridinger, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Brenntag SE, comments: “In the course of its long-term succession planning, the Supervisory Board conducted a structured selection process with both internal and external candidates. We are very pleased to have found in Ewout van Jarwaarde a highly skilled and knowledgeable successor from within Brenntag’s own ranks. A member of the Management Board since 2021, he is already well acquainted with Brenntag, its processes and culture as well as with the company’s overall business and divisional strategy.”

Ewout van Jarwaarde: “I would like to thank the Supervisory Board for their trust and support. I very much look forward to working with the dedicated Brenntag Essentials team. Building on the strong foundation built under my predecessor, we will continue implementing the division’s ‘Strategy to Win’ to drive our growth from the core and unlock our full potential.”

Steven Terwindt has chosen to not extend his contract with Brenntag to pursue opportunities outside the company. During his more than 25 years with the company, he has held various international management positions in Latin, Central, and North America inter alia as President & CEO Brenntag North and Latin America, COO North America, and most recently as COO Brenntag Essentials.

“On behalf of the entire Supervisory Board and Management Board, I want to thank Steven for his outstanding work and commitment for our company”, says Richard Ridinger. “With his long-term experience in the chemical distribution industry, deep understanding of our company and strong leadership, Steven played a pivotal role in establishing Brenntag Essentials in the markets and for the division’s recent strong performance and substantial growth as market leader in industrial chemicals distribution. We wish Steven all the best for his future.”

Evolved operating model in Brenntag divisions to accelerate strategy execution

In order to evolve the Group structure to incrementally more independent, autonomous and market-leading businesses to accelerate the strategy implementation, Brenntag will introduce a new governance and steering structure for its two divisions as of January 1, 2024. In Brenntag Specialties and Brenntag Essentials divisional Executive Committees (ExCo), led by the divisional Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) Michael Friede and Ewout van Jarwaarde, will be implemented. The operating model evolution includes a partial and gradual shift of specific functions, responsibilities, and activities from corporate level to the divisions.

Christian Kohlpaintner: “Brenntag is consequently executing and implementing its ‘Strategy to Win’ revealed just eight months ago. The further advanced operating models for both Brenntag Specialties and Brenntag Essentials announced today are testament to our determination to reflect the true nature of our business environment and bring Brenntag even closer to market developments and our customer and supplier needs. We provide the divisions with the lean and efficient processes, resources, and capabilities needed to execute a more independent and autonomous steering, improve their business performance, and accelerate their dedicated growth activities.”

The new governance structure in Brenntag Specialties is centered around global business units externally reported in two new segments, Life Science and Material Science. Brenntag will create a unique Specialties positioning with a more focused portfolio and value-added services offering based on a strong global Life Science segment (including the global business units Nutrition, Pharma and Personal Care & HI&I) and a focused global Material Science business geared towards sustainable chemistry. Dedicated organizations and capabilities for Supply Chain & Customer Services and Supplier & Customer Excellence will be built up in the division to further strengthen its operational capabilities and autonomy. With this new governance structure Brenntag Specialties is shifting from a regional to a global steering of its key businesses while continuing to consider local differences and leveraging the local strengths in the Specialties business. The setup in global business units with full profit & loss responsibility will support the division’s end-market focus and leverages its global expertise and presence while improving the capabilities for local execution.

The focus of the changes in Brenntag Essentials is on delivering “last mile” excellence and leveraging its global reach through its regional supply chain and global sourcing capabilities to better serve its customers and suppliers. Brenntag Essentials will continue to optimize and expand its network and product portfolio to expand its number 1 market position and to realize new business opportunities. In addition, Brenntag Essentials will continue to work on becoming the easiest to do business with, seamlessly connecting with the company’s customers and suppliers. With dedicated organizations in the areas of Customer & Supplier Excellence and Supply Chain Services the division we will further strengthen its commercial and supply chain capabilities.

Conclusions on strategic options and details at Capital Markets Day 2023 in late autumn

As the new governance structure in Specialties and Essentials also includes some changes in the divisional portfolio setup, this operational evolution is also a first step in Brenntag’s continual product portfolio management and consequent optimization.

The respective in-depth organizational changes and reporting structures following this new governance and steering model will be detailed in the course of the next months to prepare for the go-live in January 2024. The changes are subject to information and consultation rights of employee representatives and the implementation of such measures is subject to the completion of such information and consultation procedures.

“As mentioned ahead of our AGM in June, with this announcement, we are now providing an update on the already planned and now concrete decisions for the operating model of both divisions. The presented decisions are part of the ongoing evolution of our operating model and organizational adaptions. They are the next development step in our multi-year transformation program that we started with the introduction of our two global divisions and that we keep on driving with our ’Strategy to Win‘ execution”, adds Kristin Neumann, CFO Brenntag Group. “Our conclusions on strategic options and the future path for Brenntag and our divisions will be communicated at the CMD 2023 that will take place in late autumn.”

On the CMD, Brenntag will also share more information on the expected financial details as well as on the reporting structure coming from the introduced operating model changes.

SOURCE: Brenntag 

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