New BRF Executive Team on the Job in Europe and Eurasia

Sao Paulo, Brazil-headquartered BRF, has been ranked as the seventh largest food company in the world following the merger of Sadia and Perdigao in 2009, has appointed a new slate of managers for European and Eurasian markets. With market capitalization of approximately $17.5 billion, BRF is a major producer of frozen and refrigerated poultry products. It employs more than 110,000 people.

“Our global executive team is initiating a new cycle for the company,” said Roberto Banfi, chief executive officer. “The objective is to make BRF more market-oriented, to evolve our offering from standard, commodity products to advanced, higher added-value processed products, and to establish stronger commercial relationships with our regional clients and partners.”

Although Brazil remains the company’s biggest market, BRF is aligning to generate geographic growth in other key geographic regions around the world: the Americas, covering mainly the southern cone of Argentina and Chile; Europe and Eurasia; the Middle East and Africa (MEA), the second largest market, where there is strong brand recognition for Sadia products; and Asia, where there over four billion consumers.

“In Europe, we aim to be among the top five frozen protein players, transforming our business from standard to customized and branded solutions, with a very strong focus on quality, and innovation with scale,” said Marcos Delorenzo, the company’s recently appointed marketing manager for Europe and Eurasia.

One of the key areas of BRF’s attention in Europe during the current strategic cycle will be to leverage the magnitude of its global production and R&D platform to deliver increased customization of products to customers, particularly those in the foodservice segment.

The EU is a mature market, with very demanding and educated consumers trending towards convenience, on-the-go solutions and quick service restaurant chains. At the same time, the retail sector is consolidated and strong on private labels in Western Europe, while in Eastern Europe the retail environment is fragmented, with weaker private labels.

“This diversity provides an excellent opportunity for us in Europe,” said Christophe Vasseur, BRF’s general manager in the west and south of Europe. “Because of the scaling abilities of our production platform, R&D and supply chain, we are able to offer our channel customers in each market, whether in the B2B or foodservices sectors, highly customized products at competitive prices.”

Talented Management Team
Having returned to BRF as its chief executive officer in 2013 after four years as a consultant in Brazil and internationally, Roberto Banfi is pleased with the depth of talent in his management team. Previously, he had been with Sadia for over 12 years as director of national sales and marketing, in charge of all exporting activities for the company. Before joining Sadia, Banfi worked as director of sales at Best Food in Brazil, and for other listed food companies in Latin America and USA. He holds an MBA from Stanford University and a Bachelor of Commerce degree from HEC Lausanne.

Jean Carlos Borga is general manager in charge of UK, Ireland and Scandinavia business. Since 2003 he has occupied several positions at BRF, ranging from production supervisor to B2B sales manager in the UK and Ireland. Borga holds a postgraduate degree in Strategic Leadership and Management from the University of Bedfordshire, and a degree in Food Technology from Universidade do Oeste de Santa Catarina.

Pamela Bongiovanni is general manager for the north and east of Europe, as well as Eurasia. A graduate of Duke University and the Fuqua School of Business, she worked previously as commercial manager for Mantero Seta Spa before joining Sadia SA as head of the representative office and then moving to Minerva to lead the European commercial operation.

Christophe Vasseur, general manager for the west and south of Europe, is a European food industry specialist, having previously served as general manager for different companies, including the Unicopa Group. Moving to BRF in 2008, he is now responsible for operations in France, Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece. Vasseur holds an MBA from HEC Paris.

Marcos Delorenzo is marketing manager for Europe and Eurasia. Completing an Executive MBA from the Washington University in St. Louis and Fudan University in Shanghai, and holding an MBA in Management from UNICAMP – Universidade Estadual de Campinas, he has much experience in international sales and marketing with BRF. Previously Delorenzo worked successively as marketing manager for BRF Asia in Shanghai, regional sales manager for the retail and food services division at BRF in Moscow, marketing and trade-marketing director at Sadia Moscow and at Concordia Russia (joint venture between Sadia S.A. and Miratorg in Russia), and marketing and trade-marketing coordinator at Sadia Dubai. He started his career in the company’s international marketing department in Sao Paulo, Brazil.