Sara Lee has named Marcel Smits as executive vice president and chief financial officer (CFO). Smits will have responsibility for the corporation’s accounting, tax, treasury, procurement and information technology (IT) departments. He will report to Brenda Barnes, Sara Lee’s chairman and chief executive officer (CEO).
Smits joins Sara Lee from Dutch telecom leader Koninklijke KPN, where he served as CFO and as a member of the management board. At KPN, he oversaw a number of acquisitions and restructurings, which drove top-line growth and bottom-line savings. Prior to KPN, Smits was CFO and a member of the management board of Vendex KBB (now known as Maxeda), a Dutch retail group, where he also managed the IT function. In addition, he held various financial and management positions in Europe, South America and Asia in his 13-year career at Unilever.
Smits earned a Masters degree in business administration and a Masters degree in tax law both from the University of Amsterdam. He is a certified public accountant. He currently sits on the supervisory boards of Delta Lloyd, a large Dutch insurer, as well as Euronext, the European subsidiary of NYSE-Euronext. Smits has been a member of the board of VNO-NCW, the leading Dutch employers organisation.
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