Jacques Vermeulen, the new Coca-cola Beverages Africa CEO. IMAGE/ COURTESY

Jacques Vermeulen has been appointed the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA).

The appointment of Vermeulen, who is the current managing director of its international division, took effect on December 1.

Vermeulen has served as managing director of CCBA’s International Division, which covers all of CCBA’s Africa operations outside South Africa, since July 2016. He first joined the Coca-Cola system in 1995.

CCBA Chairman, Phil Gutsche expressed optimism that the appointment of Vermeulen would steer the company to success in its expansion move in Africa.

“Jacques brings his strong leadership and exceptional experience into this role. His appointment serves as evidence of effective succession planning and the development of our internal talent pipeline. Jacques’ experience in leading successful businesses in Africa, and the strong relationship he has with our franchise partners, the Coca-Cola Company, will be invaluable in driving growth and expanding CCBA’s footprint throughout sub-Saharan Africa,” says Gutsche.

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Vermeulen takes over from Doug Jackson, CCBA’s current Group CEO, and a 35-year veteran of the Coca-Cola system.

Vermeulen joined Coca-Cola Sabco (CCS) in 1995 as Head Office Financial Accountant and served in various financial roles both at Head Office and in operations before being appointed as CCS’s Chief Financial Officer in 2008.

Two years later, Jacques was appointed Chief Operating Officer (COO) for the Southern Division of CCS, and then in 2014 was appointed as COO responsible for all CCS’s operations.

After a short stint as acting CEO, Jacques was appointed CEO of CCS in September 2015, a role which he occupied until his appointment as MD of CCBA International Division in 2016.

CCBA was formed in July 2016 following the successful combination of the Southern and East Africa bottling operations of the non-alcoholic ready-to-drink beverages businesses of The Coca-Cola Company, SABMiller plc and Gutsche Family Investments (GFI). CCBA shareholders now are: The Coca-Cola Company (65.5 per cent) and Gutsche Family Investments (34.5 per cent).

In July 2017, CCBA acquired Kisumu’s Equator Bottlers Limited in Kenya.

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