VL Rajesh, chief executive of the packaged foods business at ITC, has stepped down to take a year-long sabbatical. He will be replaced by Hemant Malik, the chief executive of trade marketing and distribution for the group’s FMCG business.
“Following VL Rajesh’s request for some time off to attend to pressing personal matters, Hemant Malik has assumed charge as divisional chief executive of ITC’s foods division. Hemant brings with him valuable experience in several divisions in the FMCG businesses of ITC, including the incubation and development of successful brands in the foods business,” a spokesperson said.
Malik will be based out of Bengaluru, where the foods business is headquartered. Malik took charge at the trade marketing and distribution division in April this year, after heading the tobbacco business. He was also the marketing head for the foods business and was instrumental in creating and developing popular brands like Aashirvaad, Sunfeast, Candyman, Kitchens of India, Mint-O and Bingo.
B Sumant, president for the FMCG business will get additional charge as chief executive of trade marketing and distribution. This, however, is an interim arrangement, and the division will eventually be led by Sandeep Sule who has been promoted as its chief operating officer.
Sule, who was earlier executive vice-president for sales operations and development, will handle all day-to-day operations at the division. ITC has not yet decided when Sule will be made its chief executive.
The transition in senior management comes at a critical juncture for ITC whose foods business has become the primary growth driver for the company.