SOME of dairy firm Robert Wiseman’s longest-serving executives, including the last of the family members to be involved in the day-to-day running of the business, are leaving following its takeover by Müller Group earlier this year.
Managing director Billy Keane, who has been with the business for 18 years, and group finance director Gerry Sweeney, who joined 15 years ago, are leaving at the end of October as part of a restructure.
Procurement director Gavin Wiseman, younger brother of Alan and Robert Wiseman, will also leave after more than 30 years’ service with the East Kilbride company he joined from school.
Andrew McInnes, currently finance director for Müller Dairy, will become chief finance officer of Müller UK and Ireland Group. He will work with Ronald Kers, chief executive of the group’s UK business, which includes the Müller Dairy yoghurts operation.
Heiner Kamps, chief executive of the German parent company Theo Müller, said the changes came as the UK operations looked to work closer together.
“It is important to have the management structure in place to deliver our ambitions.”
He also thanked the departing executives for their contribution since the £280 million acquisition.
“With their support, significant progress has been made since the acquisition,” added Kamps.
Robert Wiseman, who was executive chairman of the family firm before the takeover, remains as a non-executive director on the board of Müller UK’s business.
The Wiseman family collected around £100m from the deal with Müller, the lion’s share going to Robert Wiseman and his brother Alan.
Wiseman produces about a third of the fresh milk consumed in the UK and counts the Co-operative Group, Sainsbury’s and Tesco among its customers. It has six dairy sites, including Aberdeen and East Kilbride. At the time of the deal Robert Wiseman said the two companies had complementary positions in the yoghurt and desserts sector and fresh milk market.
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