Procter & Gamble has resolved its long-running power struggle at the very top of the organisation with John Pepper, the president responsible for P&G’s international business, winning the succession battle to replace chairman and chief executive Edwin Artzt who retires on July 1.
A source close to the company says that the move is the result of a power struggle between Artzt’s camp, headed by executive vice president Durk Jager, and a group headed by Pepper. The source says: “Jager was Artzt’s man, who ruled with a rod of iron. Pepper is more of the people’s choice. This indicates a softening of P&G’s more aggressive management style under Artzt.”
P&G has also announced a wide-ranging restructure of its worldwide business in which it has shifted from a global management system of two divisions – US and International (rest of the world) – to four regions: North America (US and Canada); Europe, Middle East and Africa; Asia; and Latin America.
Each region will be headed by an executive vice president, reporting to Jager.
Harold Einsman becomes executive vice president for Europe, Middle East and Africa. He is presently group vice president for laundry, cleaning, paper and beverage products with P&G Europe.
Einsman will be replaced by Claude Meyer, who is regional vice president, laundry and cleaning products, Europe.
John O’Keefe will take up the new post of group vice president and president for health and beauty care products, Europe. At present, O’Keefe is vice president laundry and cleaning products for Northern Europe.
Meyer and O’Keefe will both report to Einsman.
Dick Johnson, marketing director of Procter & Gamble detergents, says: “In effect, this change signals that we are no longer a US company with an international operation – we are now a truly global organisation.”
Artzt has been with P&G for 41 years. He will continue to be a director of the company and is to become chairman of the board’s executive committee, succeeding John Smale.