Reckitt Benckiser Group (RB) has appointed Laxman Narasimhan as chief executive officer to succeed Rakesh Kapoor.
Narasimhan will join the company as CEO-designate and be appointed to the Board as an executive director effective July 16, 2019. He will become Group CEO with effect from September 1, 2019.
Narasimhan joins RB from PepsiCo where he is currently the global chief commercial officer responsible for PepsiCo's integrated long-term growth strategy. He has been a member of the PepsiCo executive committee for the last four years reporting to the chairman and chief executive. He leads strategy, global category groups, global R&D and is implementing an advanced digital capability across the PepsiCo business.
Chris Sinclair, chairman of the Board, said: ‘The Board is delighted to have appointed Narasimhan as our new chief executive officer after a thorough and rigorous global selection process from a strong bench of internal and external candidates. He will directly lead the Health business unit as well.
He is an outstanding leader who brings wide experience across the consumer goods sector, both operationally at scale, and from his time at McKinsey. He has led complex operational businesses and inspired teams across developed and emerging markets to achieve market-leading performance.
Narasimhan has exceptional strategic capabilities and consumer insight with a proven track record in developing purpose-led brands and driving consumer centric and digital innovation. This, combined with his excellent people engagement and leadership skills, gives the Board confidence that he will continue to evolve the strong culture of RB and deliver outperformance.
I would like to thank Kapoor for his continued leadership of the business and express my gratitude for his commitment and enormous contribution to RB over more than three decades. Kapoor and Narasimhan will work together over the coming weeks to ensure a seamless leadership transition and handover.’
Laxman Narasimhan said: ‘I’m delighted to be joining RB at an exciting time for the business. It is a special company with a long history of outperformance, creating innovative products and iconic brands which improve the health and lives of people across the globe. I’m looking forward to working with an exceptional group of leaders over the coming years to continue to transform RB.’