Brakes Appoints New Chief Executive For UK Business

Brakes has announced the appointment of Ton Christiaanse as its new UK Chief Executive, replacing Phil Wieland who will be leaving the business to pursue other interests early in 2017.

The foodservice wholesaler said that Christiaanse brings with him a wealth of industry experience having held leadership roles in a number of organisations, including Unilever, Farm Frites and Vion, and most recently as Chairman of AK Stoddart, the Scottish beef processor.

Christiaanse, who will report to Group CEO Ken McMeikan, will assume responsibility from Wieland on 1 January 2017 after spending time being introduced to the specifics of the business and operations in the wider group. Brakes also confirmed that Duncan Gibson, Managing Director Corporate, Public and Logistics, will leave the business early in 2017 after six years with the business.

Commenting on the appointment, McMeikan said: “We are delighted that Ton is joining Brakes – he has an excellent background in and understanding of the food industry and his energy and vision will help lead the next stage of our UK business’s development. Following the recent completion of the Brakes acquisition by Sysco, this is an incredibly exciting time for the business and Ton will play a pivotal role in ensuring that we capitalise on the opportunities that this has created.”

Christiaanse added: “This is a great opportunity to join one of the UK’s most important food companies at an exciting time in its development. I have been very impressed with the board’s vision for the future and I am looking forward to working with the talented management team to ensure that we further develop our market-leading position.”

Back in February, US foodservice distributor Sysco announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire the Brakes Group for around £2.2bn. The deal was completed in July.