Britvic hires former Coca-Cola executive to head procurement business

Soft drinks canner Britvic has hired former Coca-Cola executive Matt Swindall as its chief procurement officer.

The maker of Robinsons squashes and the licence holder for PepsiCo products in the UK said Swindall would be focused on establishing “a sustainable, fair and robust approach to procurement that delivers value for our suppliers, helps us to grow our business, and realise our vision to be the most dynamic soft drinks company, creating a better tomorrow”.

Before joining the London-listed, Hemel Hempstead-based beverage company, Swindall occupied positions within Coca Cola’s European and US operations, most recently leading the soft drinks giant’s global plastics packaging and sweeteners procurement unit.

“Matt’s wealth of industry experience makes him perfectly suited to lead Britvic’s international procurement function,” Britvic chief information, transformation and digital officer Steve Potts said.

Swindall revealed that he had been impressed by the “passion” of the 175-year-old company.

“The chance to lead the procurement team, focus our people development around core ‘best in class’ practices, and play a significant role in contributing to the company’s ambitions represents an incredible opportunity,” he said.

Britvic, which also makes J20 fruit mixers, saw revenue hit by the closure of pubs and restaurants during the coronavirus lockdown. Even so, strong sales of its Robinsons fruit squashes and PepsiCo’s Pepsi and 7Up helped turnover climb 1.4 per cent year-on-year in the six months through March. It expects the continued lockdown to have a greater impact on earnings during the rest of the year.