Heineken NV, the world’s third-largest brewer, has shaken up its management team. Three top executives, including the Chief Marketing Officer Alexis Nasard (also the regional President for the home market of Western Europe) will leave, and the company will merge some senior offices in an attempt to flatten and streamline its management.
The move comes only six months after the company rejected an approach from SABMiller that would have ended its 150-year tradition as a family-controlled business, a move that prompted questions as to what else it could do to catch up with more profitable rivals. Sales last year grew at their slowest rate since 2007, although profits rose by a more respectable 11%.
At the same time, in a move that speaks volumes about the dramatic decline of the once red-hot Russian market, Heineken said it would abolish its central and eastern European region, and lump its Russia and Belarus businesses in with its Africa and Middle East division. The rest of the faster-growing central European operations like Zywiec in Poland will be combined with Western Europe.