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NZ Dairy Foods Announces Major Restructuring

22 August 2002

New Zealand Dairy Foods Announces Major Restructuring

New Zealand Dairy Foods (NZDF) has announced to staff a major restructuring plan that will be implemented in coming months. The announcement follows an extensive scoping study looking at how the business needs to be structured in the environment in which NZDF now operates, and to position the Company to become an even more significant player in the NZ domestic dairy foods market.

Says Peter McClure, CEO, “We are moving to a structure that reflects the fact that New Zealand Dairy Foods operates as a Fast Moving Consumer Goods Company (FMCG).

“The present structure, while entirely appropriate during our disengagement from the old Dairy Group, duplicates a number of services and resources throughout the organisation, and slows our ability to respond to customer needs. The new structure will enable us to move more swiftly, be more efficient and above all be more innovative in meeting the needs of our customers.”

The change will regrettably result in a number of positions being made redundant. Until NZDF has worked through the process with staff and their union representatives they are unable to be specific about the extent of these changes. NZDF has assured staff that the details of this will be worked through as quickly as possible.

Says Mr McClure, “Having confirmed the business model the company needs to operate under, we will work through the positions required to service this structure. It is only then that the exact number of positions needing to be made redundant will be known.”

NZDF was purchased in May 2002 by Rank Group. This followed an extensive sales process that initially saw Fonterra divest it’s 50% ownership in NZDF to Rank Group, followed by the acquisition of the remaining 50% of shares held by farmer shareholders.

Says Mr McClure, “It was always anticipated that once ownership of the company was resolved, restructuring of the business would occur. The new structure will see the food and beverage divisions merged into one customer focused business unit supported by a strengthened operations team.

“For the majority of our 900 staff it will be a case of business as usual. However, we are mindful that restructuring can be a very stressful time and we will be putting in place counselling and other support services to assist staff as much as possible.”


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