Jan 25 (BusinessDesk) - One of the chief architects of Fonterra's successfully launched listed units, chief financial officer Jonathan Mason, is to leave the co-operative.
The softly spoken former senior executive for the American wood products giant International Paper first came to New Zealand from 2000 to 2005 to be cfo at Carter Holt Harvey, which IP owned at the time, before returning to the US.
He came back to take up the senior financial role in Fonterra's management team in 2009, and helped steer the organisation not only through the depths of the global financial crisis, but also the tortuous process of devising a scheme that allowed farmers to realise capital without frightening them into fearing loss of control of the co-operative.
Chief executive Theo Spierings said an international search is now under way to replace Mason, who had always indicated the Fonterra position would be his last full time role. He would retire within the next six months but would support the business through to the end of the financial year.
"Jonathan will leave Fonterra in a much stronger position and we are grateful to him for this contribution," said Spierings.