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Updated on: Tuesday, December 24, 2019, 11:59 AM IST

Tata Global Beverages: Can the new CEO help the company course correct?

Whirlpool’s MD, Mr. Sunil D’Souza takes charge as MD & CEO of Tata Global Beverages
Sunil A. D'Souza |

Sunil A. D'Souza |

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Mr. Sunil A. D'Souza has been appointed as the MD and CEO of Tata Global (TGB) for a period of 5 years (4th Apr’20 to 3rd Apr’25), subject to shareholder approval.

Currently, Mr. D’Souza is serving as the MD of Whirlpool India Ltd. During his stint at Whirlpool, the company delivered strong growth and industry-leading performance.

He has more than 25 years of experience in the consumer products and consumer durables industry across India and Asia. Prior to Whirlpool, he worked with PepsiCo Inc. for 15 years in senior level positions across various geographies where he handled all aspects of the company's foods and beverages portfolio. Before his role in PepsiCo, Mr. D’Souza has worked with Coca Cola, Standard Chartered Bank and Brooke Bond Lipton India Ltd. in various capacities.

Under his helm, Whirlpool’s revenue/PAT logged in 12%/20% CAGR over FY16-19, while market cap increased 3x during the same period. Mr D'Souza is well-respected in the consumer durables industry for his successful track record of leadership. Some highlights of his contributions at Whirlpool are as follows

(1) Strengthened relationship with trade partners and significantly expanded distribution network

(2) Aggressive focus on volume growth. Under his leadership, Whirlpool fiercely competed against the Korean giants (Samsung and LG).

(3) Shortened product development cycle and accelerated new product launches.

His 26 years of experience in the consumer goods industry and deep understanding of the F&B industry should benefit TGB immensely.

What changes is he expected to bring about at TGB?

Based on Mr. D’Souza’s previous actions and leadership style, the following are some of the changes that can be expected:

(1) Aggressive focus on volume and market share growth

(2) Strengthening of sales force and distribution channels,

(3) Focus on reducing cost

(4) Acceleration in product launches/innovation.

While there is certainly a lot of promise in Mr. D’Souza’s appointment as CEO, a key monitorable would be his ability to stir up the organization culture and make it more competitive without disturbing the core operating principles of the Tata Group.

Even before Mr. D’Souza, Whirlpool was a well-run company. On the contrary, TGB has its fair share of challenges and turning its fortunes around would require the new CEO to muster all his faculties.

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Published on: Tuesday, December 24, 2019, 11:07 AM IST
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