McCain Foods South Africa has appointed Unathi Mhlatyana as its new managing director (MD) effective 1 February 2021.
Mhlatyana brings with him over 20 years’ experience in the FMCG industry, having previously been employed in leadership roles with Pepsico and SAB/AB InBev.
Understanding of farm to fork
Karabo Mothibi, McCain Foods South Africa human resources director, adds that Mhlatyana’s values and character are aligned with that of the company. “He has a thorough understanding of the value chain from farm to fork, and most importantly he is a people-centred leader.”
“Unathi is a versatile team player boasting extensive experience in developing and implementing cutting-edge business strategies geared towards achieving organisational goals,” says Mothibi.
Outlining the requirements and qualities the company deems essential in an MD, Mothibi explains that McCain Foods South Africa was looking for candidates that are strategic leaders and have an understanding of both the agricultural and FMCG industries in the country. “They needed to have a combination of management and business skills as well as being able to fit into the McCain Foods South Africa culture. Ultimately, we wanted our new MD to be able to work well with people and lead the team whilst continuing to build and grow the business.”
Mhlatyana explains that he has already laid out his goals as MD at McCain Foods South Africa. He intends to drive a purpose-led business model with a clear sustainable profitability trajectory whilst leveraging the full potential of the company’s resources to create business strategies that deliver sustainable organic growth in collaboration with the customers and communities in which the business operates.
However, he points out that these goals can only be achieved through great collaboration with every McCain associate, its key stakeholders and ensuring that as a company the team aims to excel in everything it does. “In the coming months, and together with my McCain associates, we will create an environment where people are passionate, consumer and customer-centric and are unstoppable in delivering the best results.”
Mhlatyana emphasises the importance of the purpose and values of the McCain brand. “One cannot ignore the privilege of working for this company and the amazing culture that is evident in the way the business operates locally and globally. Bringing people, family and communities together resonate with me personally and the brand has this inherent in its DNA.”
When it comes to his personal goals, Mhlatyana says he aspires to be an authentic and transformational leader that has a positive impact on people’s lives.
Commenting on his outlook for the future of McCain Foods South Africa, Mhlatyana says he has a great foundation to build on. “The company has just celebrated 20 years in South Africa with a tremendous track record of delivering exceptional results.”
“When one considers the opportunities that our continent has to offer, one can only be excited about the possibilities and the potential that awaits our industry. As a company, the team and I are poised to unlock these opportunities for the long term value growth of the McCain Foods South Africa business. As such, I consider myself very fortunate to be joining such a motivated and passionate team,” he concludes.