(Adds background, details throughout; includes COFCO's new head
of coffee in paragraph 8-10)
NEW YORK/LONDON Jan 13 The shake-up at COFCO
Agri, the international grains business of China's state run
COFCO group, has continued with the appointment of
chief operating officer and a new coffee chief, according to
sources and an internal memo.
According to the memo seen by Reuters, Selina Yang has been
named chief operating officer. This follows last week's
announcement that Matt Jansen had resigned as chief executive
officer 18 months after joining.
Industry sources said separately a new global head of coffee
will start at the company in February.
Yang will be responsible for the global grains, oilseeds and
cotton business, according to the memo. She been head of
business integration with the parent group COFCO, three sources
said. The previous chief of grains and oilseeds Kevin
Brassington has left the company, the memo said, confirming an
earlier Reuters report.
COFCO vice president Jingtao Chi, who is known as Johnny,
was named chief executive of both COFCO Agri Ltd and COFCO
International Ltd to succeed Jansen, the company said last week.
Officials at COFCO Agri did not respond to requests for
comment, while the parent group could not be immediately reached
The shake-up comes amid changes at other global commodities
traders following a difficult year, with bumper crops in major
growing nations like the United States pressuring prices of corn
and soybeans and intensifying competition among
The Asia trading chief at rival Archer Daniels Midland Co
has left the company, sources said on Friday.
COFCO's memo also named the heads of business segments who
will report to Yang including Crawford Tatum, its global head of
Separately, the company has named a new global head of
coffee after the retirement of Ernesto Leon-Gambetta, according
to three industry sources. Leon-Gambetta left COFCO Agri in
October 2016, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Joseph Reiner, who according to his LinkedIn profile is a
chief procurement officer for candy company Mars Inc in Brazil,
will start as coffee chief in February, sources said.
A spokesman for Mars did not respond immediately to a
request for comment.
COFCO has been on a global expansion drive in recent years,
investing over $3 billion to buy Noble Group's
agribusiness as well as a large stake in Dutch grain trader
Since first investing in Nidera in 2014, COFCO has had
(Reporting by Jonathan Saul and Nigel Hunt in London, Dominique
Patton in Beijing and Chris Prentice in New York; Editing by
Keith Weir and Cynthia Osterman)