Louis Dreyfus Reshuffles Management in New CEO's First Big Move

  • First major change since Gonzalo Ramirez took over as CEO
  • Number of executive committees reduced to two from three

Louis Dreyfus Commodities BV is reshuffling management across its businesses in the first major changes since Chief Executive Officer Gonzalo Ramirez took over the 164-year-old commodity trader three months ago.

Nigel Mamalis, a 28-year veteran at the company, will step down from his role in the senior executive committee on Jan. 1 and become an adviser to the CEO, a spokeswoman for Louis Dreyfus said. The number of top executive committees will be reduced to two from three in order to improve "decision-making agility and efficiency." The company also made changes in its sugar and cotton businesses.

Louis Dreyfus, one of the largest commodities traders, is shaking up management a month after Cargill Inc. scrapped its two-tier executive leadership structure in favor of a single team. Louis Dreyfus promoted Ramirez to CEO in September, ending a 17-month search for the job.

Sugar, Cotton

As part of the changes, Jacques Gillaux is leaving as head of sugar and will be replaced by Anthony Tancredi, who has worked in the cotton business for 30 years, the spokeswoman said. Tim Bourgois will take Tancredi’s role as head of cotton. Joe Nicosia will resume a “more active” role as senior head of the cotton platform.

Miguel Catella, currently head of finance, will take in addition the role of being an adviser to the CEO on financial markets. Andrea Maserati was confirmed as the company’s senior head of regions, a role he took on an interim basis after Gert-Jan van den Akker left for Cargill.

Louis Dreyfus trades agricultural commodities from cotton to sugar to wheat and forms part of the top league of industry traders collectively known as the "ABCD". The nickname comes from the initials of the companies Archer-Daniels-Midland Co., Bunge Ltd., Cargill and Dreyfus itself.

The company, founded in 1851 by grain trader Leopold Louis-Dreyfus, is weathering a slump affecting the wider agriculture sector. The company, which has trading operations in Geneva, Singapore and the U.S., said in September that first-half profit dropped 50 percent.

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