CONSOLIDATED Pastoral Company will later today announce the appointment of Troy Setter as its new chief executive officer, succeeding Keith Warren.
The surprise move comes just two months after Mr Setter left the Australian Agricultural Co to join CPC.
He was originally hired as chief operating officer, the same positioned he filled at AA Co.
Consolidated Pastoral Co is the largest privately-owned beef producer in Australia, running about 360,000 head of cattle across nineteen properties totalling 5.6 million hectares of land in the Northern Territory, Queensland and northern regions of Western Australia.
As described in this earlier article published on Beef Central when his departure from AA Co was announced, Mr Setter has more than 20 years of experience in agribusiness. While at AA Co, he successfully executed a three-year strategic plan to restructure the company’s operations, diversify sales to new markets and increase profitability.
He takes over the chief executive’s role at CPC as the business moves into the next phase of its transformation from a farm-based production business to one focused on the customer, and diversifying into fast-growing Asian markets.
Keith Warren is stepping down from the CEO role in order to pursue opportunities in Sydney where he can be closer to his family, a statement to be issued shortly by CPC will say.
Mr Warren, a qualified chartered account, had a strong career track record in the food service industry, where he held senior international management positions with KFC and Pizza Hut.
It was widely interpreted at the time of his appointment in September 2013 that his skills-set and experience would help drive CPC into Asia as a meals solutions provider, moving away from its traditional role simply as a cattle producer.
Mr Setter’s appointment in March this year was seen as a means of enhancing the pastoral operations side of the company’s capability, where Mr Warren had had little or no previous experience.
“The Board thanks Keith for his contribution as CEO to the group, where he brought a strong customer focus to the transformation of the group and has played a leading role in strengthening the organisation,” Guy Hands, chairman and chief investment officer of parent company, Terra Firma said.
CPC was bought by Terra Firma, one of Europe’s largest private equity firms, in 2009.
In today’s statement, Mr Setter said he was delighted at the opportunity to lead CPC, as it executes its five-year plan and continues to expand into new markets.
“With macro-economic factors continuing to drive increases in the global demand for beef, and the company’s strong reputation and position in the market, now is an exciting time to undertake our next phase of growth,” he said.
Terra Firma chairman Guy Hands said Mr Setter had great skill in driving best-in-class operations in the beef industry, and this talent had been in clear evidence in the time since he joined CPC.
“He has extensive management experience in the agribusiness sector, as well as a proven ability to lead strategic change programs. I’m confident that with his background and ability, he will successfully guide CPC through the next phase of its development, as we continue our transformation of this interesting business.”
Speculation will now inevitably focus on whether today’s development was part of a ‘grander plan’ hatched at the time of Mr Setter’s original appointment, or whether it was simply coincidental.