ITC Ltd has appointed Sanjiv Puri, a wholetime director of the company, as chief operating officer (COO) with immediate effect, the company said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).
On 6 December, Puri took over as executive director from 6 December, replacing P.V. Dhobale. Before that, Puri was the president of ITC’s packaged goods business that accounts for about 80% of ITC’s business.
Puri is seen as the successor of chairman Y.C. Deveshwar, who is to step down early next year after a more than two-decade stint as chairman. Deveshwar, who will continue as non-executive chairman for at least three years after that, has already set a high target for his successors – Rs.1 trillion revenue from consumer goods segment (other than cigarettes) by 2030.
This is more than 10 times of the company’s current revenues from the segment. In fiscal year to March 2016, ITC reported Rs.9,731 crore in revenue from sale of packaged goods (excluding cigarettes) with a pre-tax profit of Rs.70.5 crore.
Puri, a graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, joined ITC in 1986. Puri has worked with ITC in several roles. Puri’s first major break was in 2001 when he was appointed the managing director Surya Nepal, a subsidiary of ITC that became one of the largest private companies in Nepal. Puri also played a key role in ITC’s entry into the apparel business.
In 2006, Puri became the managing director of ITC Infotech and led the business till August 2009. Then, he became the divisional chief executive of ITC’s tobacco business, with additional responsibilities of trade marketing and distribution of the country’s largest cigarette maker.
In 2014, Puri became the president of fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) business. After Puri took charge of the packaged goods business, ITC entered into the juice segment with the acquisition of the BNatural brand. The company also acquired the hygiene brands Savlon and Shower to Shower from Johnson & Johnson.
This article was first published on Livemint.com