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Marel Names New CEO

The previous CEO stepped down for personal reasons.

Kristen Kazarian

December 12, 2023

2 Min Read
Marel appoints new CEO
Marel declined a recent proposal from JBT for acquisition of the company for $2.6B.Image courtesy of Marel

Marel, a multi-national meat, poultry, and fish processing equipment company based in Iceland, has appointed an interim CEO.

Current CEO Arni Oddur Thordarson, has resigned with immediate effect, due to personal reasons. The Board of Directors of Marel has accepted his resignation and appointed Arni Sigurdsson, deputy chief executive officer, as interim CEO of Marel effective immediately. The Board of Directors will now go through the processing of seeking a permanent chief executive officer.

”The Board of Directors sincerely thanks Arni Oddur Thordarson for his significant contribution to Marel‘s growth and success during the past 10 years as CEO and prior to that, eight years as chairman of the Board of Directors. His clear vision and ambition to transform the global food processing industry has been the guiding light in Marel’s strategy. We are fortunate to be able to ask Arni Sigurdsson to assume the role of Interim Chief Executive Officer to ensure progress on our strategy and business continuity for our customers. He has the Board’s full confidence to lead Marel on the path to further value creation.“

Sigurdsson joined Marel in 2014 initially as head of strategy, and then from 2020 ‒ 2022 held the role of chief strategy officer and executive vice president of Strategic Business Units before assuming the position of chief business officer and deputy CEO in November 2022. Before joining Marel, Sigurdsson worked at AGC Partners and Landsbanki Islands.

”It is an honor to lead the great Marel team and to partner with our customers globally," said Sigurdsson. "I have worked across our business now for almost a decade and believe we have tremendous potential, technology, people and the ability to transform the way food is processed. We have been taking decisive steps to set us up for success and we are on the right track. I look forward to engaging with our dedicated and passionate teams, customers, and wider stakeholders in the coming weeks as we continue on our journey.”

Just last month, JBT sent a non-binding proposal to Marel's Board of Directors regarding acquisition of the company for $2.6 billion. Marel stated in a press release that it "will review the non-binding proposal with due care and process to assess its merits, consistent with the long-term interests of the company and all shareholders" and it expects to do so in a timely manner."

Just a week later, the Icelandic processing company declined JBT's offer. The reason, Marel stated, was that JBT 's proposal "didn't account for the intrinsic value of the business and the inherent risk of executing the proposed transaction."

About the Author(s)

Kristen Kazarian

Managing Editor

Kristen Kazarian has been a writer and editor for more than three decades. She has worked at several consumer magazines and B2B publications in the fields of food and beverage, packaging, processing, women's interest, local news, health and nutrition, fashion and beauty, automotive, and computers.

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