Louis Dreyfus Commodities Names New CEO After Schoen Resigns

Louis Dreyfus Commodities, the world’s largest raw cotton trader and a leading orange juice processor, named Ciro Echesortu as the company’s new chief executive officer after Serge Schoen resigned.

Schoen, who will leave the post on June 30 after eight years with the Rotterdam-based trader, will join the parent company Louis Dreyfus Holding B.V. in an advisory capacity and remain a member of the supervisory board of Louis Dreyfus Commodities Holdings, the company said in a statement e-mailed today. Echesortu, who joined the company in 1985, was chief operating officer and head trader since 2009.

Schoen’s departure is the second resignation by a top Louis Dreyfus executive in two years. In June 2011, Louis Dreyfus’s chief executive officer, Jacques Veyrat, resigned.

Louis Dreyfus Commodities quadrupled its sales in the past six years largely because it’s private, Schoen said in April, without giving an absolute number. Sales in 2012 amounted to $57.1 billion, down from $57.7 billion a year earlier, according to information on the company’s website. Net-income from continuing operations was a record $1.1 billion and a 25 percent increase for $875 million a year earlier, it said.

“Under Serge’s and Ciro’s leadership, our team has brought the company to its leading position in agribusiness globally,” Margarita Louis-Dreyfus, chairman of the Louis Dreyfus Group, said in the statement. The company is well positioned “to continue its impressive trajectory,” she said.

Louis Dreyfus is also a leading rice trader and second-biggest sugar cane processor by capacity, according to its website.

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