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Fonterra executive Caldwell quits for 'personal reasons' after 18 months in job

Monday 25th November 2013

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Fonterra Cooperative Group managing director of people, culture and services, Chris Caldwell, has left the job after just 18 months in the role, citing personal reasons.

Caldwell's responsibilities have been handed over to chief financial officer Lukas Paravicini with immediate effect, Fonterra said in a short statement. Those tasks include programmes to enhance Fonterra's culture, lead the development of staff, and ensure "the group's internal services are run efficiently and effectively to best serve the needs of our businesses and teams," according to Fonterra's website.

His resignation ends five years with the company, where he was appointed MD director of people, culture and services in May last year, having previously been general manager of finance.

Caldwell was one of 12 direct reports to chief executive Theo Spierings, who expanded the management team to create a flatter structure with a greater regional focus.

The exit comes as Fonterra re-gathers itself after the global threat to its reputation when an unfounded food scare in August prompted a precautionary recall.

Fonterra's board-sanctioned inquiry into the scare found Fonterra's handling of the fall-out was "inadequate" for the kind and size of the crisis and the company's lack of responsiveness to external stakeholders the result of its "fortress" mentality.

The dairy exporter is holding its annual meeting in Edendale tomorrow, and unitholders in the Fonterra Shareholders' Fund will have their annual meeting next Monday in Auckland.

Units in the fund slipped 0.3 percent to $6.54 today.

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