Monday, February 26, 2024

Mathieson announces resignation from Zespri

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CEO moving to global berry producer Driscoll’s after two decades with kiwifruit company.
Quality costs ‘significantly impacted’ grower returns, the kiwifruit marketer says.
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Zespri CEO Dan Mathieson has resigned and will take up a new position as president of the Americas for global berry company Driscoll’s.

Mathieson has been at Zespri for 21 years, almost seven of those as CEO. 

He will remain with Zespri to oversee the 2024 harvest and until a new CEO is appointed, with the industry poised to deliver one of its largest crops to meet growing demand for Zespri kiwifruit around the world.

Zespri chair Bruce Cameron said Mathieson leaves as a world-class CEO who has helped turn Zespri into a leading sales and marketing company.

“Under Dan’s exceptional leadership Zespri grew sales from almost $2.3 billion in 2016/17 to a peak just over $4bn in 2021/22 prior to the covid-19 pandemic, with that growth set to continue in the coming years. Through that time he demonstrated his ability to bring talented people together, to set and execute strategy and ultimately to deliver great outcomes for the industry.

“Dan leaves the company in a strong position to build on the industry’s success, with strong and stable management and a clear strategy the team is committed to executing well. I’m excited about the future and know we have the right people to continue to create value for our growers and partners and we know Dan will have great success in his new role.”

Mathieson said it was a difficult decision to leave but he does so confident the industry is well positioned.

“I’m so passionate about this industry. It’s filled with incredible, deeply committed people providing a world-class product and its future is so bright. We’ve had an industry-wide focus on addressing the quality challenges imposed by covid restrictions and on delivering the premium-quality product we’re known for and we’ve seen the results of that this season.”

Mathison said he remains focused on the upcoming season, and is proud of what the industry is achieving. 

“There will be new challenges ahead, but with an outstanding team of people, a clear strategy, and strong investment in innovation, I know Zespri will continue to be an increasingly strong force in the healthy food space.”

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