David Hearn is a highly experienced Chair both of listed companies and privately owned businesses. He currently serves as Chair of Safestore Holdings plc and is also Chair of The a2 Milk Company, a company listed on the New Zealand and Australian Stock Exchanges, a position he will step down from on 16 November 2023. He is a non-executive director of Lovat Partners Ltd.
In a career spanning more than 40 years, David has held senior roles in a number of global businesses, including in the food and beverage industry with Del Monte, PepsiCo and United Biscuits. David served as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Goodman Fielder, a listed Australian food business, from 1995 to 2001 and also as CEO of Cordiant Group plc in the US from 2001 to 2003. In 2005, he was appointed CEO of Committed Capital, an international private equity and advisory firm based in London and Sydney, for whom he acted as Chair of a wide range of portfolio businesses over a twelve-year period.
David Hearn will succeed Warren Tucker who has been Interim Chair since 1 September 2023. Warren will continue to serve as a Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Audit Committee after he steps down as Interim Chair.
Paul Forman, Senior Independent Director, who led the search for the new Chair, will retire from the Board on 31 December 2023 and, as previously announced, Kim Nelson will take up the position of Senior Independent Director of Tate & Lyle from 1 January 2024.
Commenting on David’s appointment, Warren Tucker, Interim Chair, said:
“The Board is delighted that David Hearn will be joining Tate & Lyle as Chair in January. David’s breadth of experience, skills and knowledge, particularly of the food industry, will complement and further strengthen Tate & Lyle’s Board. I look forward to working closely with him to ensure a smooth handover during the coming weeks.”
David Hearn said:
“I am delighted to take on the role of Chair of Tate & Lyle at what is an exciting time for the business. Tate & Lyle is a business with a deep sense of purpose, in a strong financial position, which puts its customers at the heart of everything it does. I look forward to working with the Board, Nick Hampton and the leadership team to deliver on the Company’s growth agenda.”
Nick Hampton, Chief Executive, said:
“We look forward to welcoming David to Tate & Lyle and to working with him to deliver on our strategy to create solutions that meet growing consumer demand for healthier, tastier and more sustainable food and drink. On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Warren Tucker for his diligent leadership of the Board during this interim period, and also to thank Paul Forman for his leadership of the Chair succession process, his service as the Senior Independent Director, and for his significant contribution to the Tate & Lyle Board over the last nine years.”
There are no further details to be disclosed pursuant to Listing Rule 9.6.13 in connection with Mr Hearn’s appointment. Biographical details for Mr Hearn are set out below.
For more information contact Tate & Lyle PLC:
Christopher Marsh, VP Investor Relations
Tel: Mobile: +44 (0) 7796 192 688
Nick Hasell, FTI Consulting (Media)
Tel: Mobile: +44 (0) 7825 523 383
About Mr David Hearn
David Hearn is the Chair of Safestore Holdings plc and a non-executive director of Lovat Partners Ltd.
David became a non-executive director and deputy Chair of The a2 Milk Company in 2014 becoming the Chair in 2018. David will serve as the Chair of The a2 Milk Company, a company listed on the New Zealand Stock Exchange and dual listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, until 16 November 2023 when he will step down from the board.
Between 2005 and 2018, David held non-executive directorships on the boards of LifeCare Residences Ltd, Committed Capital PE, and Comqi Holdings Ltd, and he was Chair of Hammonds LLP.
David started his career in 1977 with Procter & Gamble before joining the food industry in 1984 as the CEO for Del Monte’s business in the UK and Ireland. After the business was acquired by Nabisco, David was given responsibility for leading the Smiths Crisps division which he did for three years until, in1990, Nabisco was acquired by PepsiCo. David was appointed into a divisional VP role with responsibility for running the Snackfoods division in Europe based in Barcelona. In 1992, David joined United Biscuits as deputy CEO running the snacks business worldwide, which included KP Snacks, Ross Youngs and McVitie’s. After a successful three years of acquisitions and growth, David accepted the role of CEO of Goodman Fielder, the listed Australian business and he relocated to Sydney in 1995. In 2001, David moved to the US to become the CEO of Cordiant Group plc, based in New York. When that business was acquired by WPP in 2003/2004 David returned to Europe. In 2005, David was appointed CEO of Committed Capital, an international private equity and advisory firm with offices in London and Sydney. Over the next twelve years, David operated as Chair for a range of portfolio businesses, spanning travel, technology, media, legal and B2B.
Mr Hearn received an MA in English Literature from Oxford University.