Unilever Nigeria names Kleinebenne new MD

Marcus Amudipe
Marcus Amudipe


Kazeem Owoseni

The Board of Directors of Unilever Nigeria Plc has approved the appointment of Mr. Tim Kleinebenne, following the resignation of Mr. Carl Cruz as Managing Director, which takes effect from May 4, 2023.

The appointment of Mr. Kleinebenne will take effect from May 5, shortly after the last day of Mr. Cruz, in office, as revealed in a statement issued by the organization yesterday.

The statement reads in part: “On behalf of the Board of Directors, management, and staff of Unilever Nigeria, we would like to wish Mr. Cruz all the very best in his future endeavors and would like to express our sincere gratitude to him for his outstanding work which delivered positive business turnaround and a significant increase in both turnover and profit, thereby setting Unilever Nigeria on a path to sustainable and profitable growth after steering the company through the difficult years of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Appreciating the outgoing MD, the President, of Unilever Africa, Mr. Jaime Aguilera, said: “I would like to thank Carl personally for his dedication and commitment to bringing Unilever’s Compass Strategy to life.

“He has delivered superb results at Unilever Nigeria by serving the Nigerian consumer and his work ensuring the company continues to actively contribute to building a better society in Nigeria in its centenary year,”

However, the president, who welcomes the incoming president to his new role, is described as someone, who has a resilient entrepreneur, who can deploy business and marketing strategies, that can take the company to the next level.

“I also want to welcome Tim to his new role where his skills as a resilient entrepreneur who can deploy business and market development strategies with speed and determination will take Unilever Nigeria to the next level,” he said.

Kleinebenne graduated in Business Economics from the University of Hamburg in Germany.

He is a highly experienced General Manager, who has 31 years of international experience in the Fast Moving Consumer Goods industry at Unilever. This includes senior sales and marketing roles as well as over 10 years as Managing Director of Unilever businesses, two of which were publicly listed.

Mr. Kleinebenne, who currently oversees the affair of Unilever Côte d’Ivoire, as the Managing Director, had once served as Managing Director of Unilever Ethiopia, where he established the business and built it into a leading local consumer goods manufacturer, and as Managing Director of Unilever Caribbean.

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