Imperial Brands (LON:IMB) today announced that Chief Executive Officer Alison Cooper and the Board have agreed that she will step down from the role of CEO and from the Board once a suitable successor is found.
As CEO, Alison has driven a sharper focus on Imperial’s strongest brands and markets, halving the number of cigarette brands to ensure a higher quality of growth, with Asset Brands now accounting for two thirds of the Group’s tobacco net revenue. She also significantly enhanced Imperial’s presence in the highly profitable USA market with the $7 billion acquisition of brands and assets in 2014 and has been the architect of the launch and development of Imperial’s next generation products business.
While the search for a successor continues, Alison will focus on driving the performance of the business, including the asset divestment programme, which we expect to realise proceeds of up to £2 billion by May 2020.
Further announcements on the Chairman and CEO will be made when their successors are appointed.
On behalf of Imperial Brands, Chairman Mark Williamson, said: “Alison has worked tirelessly and with great energy and passion during her 20 years with Imperial, nine of which have been as CEO, and the Board would like to thank her for the tremendous contribution she has made.
“During her tenure as CEO the business has been significantly simplified and reshaped to strengthen its long-term growth potential, and more than £10 billion in dividends has been returned to shareholders. I am pleased that Alison has committed to continue to lead the business until a successor is appointed, ensuring an orderly transition of responsibilities.”