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Libstar announces the retirement of current CEO and his replacement from January 2023

Andries van Rensburg and Charl de Villiers
The group’s current CFO, Charl de Villiers, will officially take the helm from 1 January 2023.

Libstar today announced the retirement of its CEO, Andries van Rensburg, at the end of the year. The group’s current CFO, Charl de Villiers, will officially take the helm from 1 January 2023.

The appointment follows a rigorous process involving numerous external and internal candidates over the last year.

Charl is a Chartered Accountant and LLB graduate, with a unique combination of legal and financial qualifications, which provides a breadth of technical competence, strategic problem-solving skills and attention to detail.  Charl will continue to drive the repositioning of the group’s portfolio towards a higher-growth and value-added food portfolio, as well as the growth of its categories and channels through both organic expansion and acquisitions.

“The Board concluded that Charl was the best candidate due to his in-depth understanding of the business and strategy of the group. He has worked alongside Andries and the executive management team since joining Libstar in 2017 and has been instrumental in the development of the group’s strategy. He has a deep understanding of Libstar’s commercial, financial and operational disciplines and has strong relationships with the management teams and other stakeholders. Andries and Charl will continue to work with the rest of the team to ensure a smooth handover process. As a board we are indebted to Andries for his invaluable leadership and building such a strong foundation and team. We wish him well in his well-deserved retirement.”

Libstar chairman Wendy Luhabe

“Libstar has been an integral part of my life for 17 years and although I will miss it deeply, I leave it in the very capable hands of our 7000 strong family of employees led by a solid leadership team.  I have no doubt in Charl’s ability to lead the business and to take the group forward.  We are proud of the breadth of skills at the operational level, which has ensured that our key relationships are not held by only a few people. Charl has worked closely with me and our management teams, supported by a strong financial team.

Outgoing CEO Andries van Rensburg

Andries co-founded Libstar in 2005 with the vision of building a value-added consumer goods business. Guiding and instilling the company’s entrepreneurial spirit.  The group was built from its humble beginnings to a group of 17 decentralised divisions spanning a diverse value-added food product and channel base. Andries was instrumental in the Group’s transition from a private to a public company in 2018.  During the last two years he navigated the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic by protecting Libstar’s people, its customers and the financial stability of the group.

Incoming CEO Charl de Villiers said:

“I am truly excited about leading the Libstar family. I feel honoured to have worked so closely with the co-founders from the start of my time at Libstar. This has allowed me to grow both in my personal and professional life and entrenched the Libstar passion and culture of our people in the way I work. We have a robust strategy in place that is brought to life through a talented team of passionate leaders with entrepreneurial spirit. I am committed to further accelerating the implementation of this strategy to ensure our future success, in unlocking stakeholder value.”

The board also announced that Cornél Lodewyks, who currently serves as managing executive of Lancewood, Libstar’s largest operating division, has been appointed as an executive director and member of the Libstar board, with effect from 1 January 2023.

With more than 20 years of consumer packaged goods experience, Cornél’s knowledge of the industry has been instrumental in the success of Lancewood. He joined Lancewood in 2011 and was promoted to managing executive in 2015.

Cornél will continue in his role as managing executive of Lancewood, whilst supporting the group management team in the implementation of its strategic initiatives.

“I’ve been fortunate to be a part of the Libstar family for the last 11 years, seven of these as the Managing Executive of the Lancewood division. Libstar’s strength is our entrepreneurial spirit, our passion and the dedication of our people. The group has a collaborative approach where divisional leaders have a seat at the table and are encouraged to be part of the strategic direction of the group. I look forward to working with Charl and trust that I can add value, both at executive and board level, based on my in-depth experience and knowledge of the industry.”

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