It is the task of the CEO to lead operations in accordance with the guidelines and instructions of the Board. In conjunction with this, the CEO shall use the required control systems to ensure that the company complies with applicable laws and ordinances. The CEO reports to the Board meetings and shall ensure the Board receives as much factual, detailed and relevant information as is required for the Board to reach well-informed decisions. The CEO also maintains continual dialogue with the Chairman of the Board and keeps him informed of the development and financial position of the Company and the Group.
AAK’s Group management team consists of thirteen persons from six countries: the CEO, CFO, CMO, CTO, HR/Communications, and President European Supply Chain, as well as seven persons in charge of business areas/countries. The Group management team meets on a monthly basis and deals with the Group’s financial development, investments, synergy and productivity projects, acquisitions, Group-wide development projects, leadership and competence supply and other strategic issues. The meetings are chaired by the CEO, who reaches decisions in consultation with the other members of the Group management team.
The Group has a small number of Group employees, who are responsible for Group-wide activities, such as financial performance, tax, IT, internal audit, strategy, investor relations, information and legal issues. The CEO and the Group management team are presented on pages 28–29. For remuneration principles and salaries and other fees paid to the CEO and the Group management team, please see Note 8.
AAK’s business areas are Food Ingredients, Chocolate & Confectionery Fats and Technical Products & Feed. The heads of each business area/country are responsible for goals, strategies, product development and day-to-day business issues, as well as for profit, cash flow and balance sheets for the unit in question. The business areas in turn are organised into different sectors with responsibility for day-to-day business issues. Direction is exercised through internal boards, which meet four times a year. At these meetings, AAK’s President/CEO acts as chairman of the board, and the Group CFO also participates. Other executives are co-opted as necessary.
In all countries where AAK has subsidiaries, a Country Manager has legal charge of operations. The Country Manager’s task is to represent AAK vis-à-vis public authorities in the country, to coordinate operations on the ground, organization and Group-wide procedures/projects and to ensure that Group-wide guidelines are complied with.
For each such country, one member of the Group management team has been appointed to have overriding responsibility for operations. This person is the superior of the Country Manager, and in most cases acts as chairman of the local legal board.