The Zespri Board has appointed Peter Springford as an independent director, to replace long-serving director David Pilkington.
Zespri Chairman Peter McBride said the Board sought a candidate with a strong mix of business leadership and corporate governance experience, as well as exposure to the Asian business environment.
“Peter has an extensive business track record in managing companies in Australia, New Zealand and Asia, including five years in Hong Kong as President of International Paper (Asia) Limited and four years as Chief Executive Officer of Carter Holt Harvey.
“He also has significant corporate governance experience as a previous director of the New Zealand Refining Company and now with Infratil and as the previous Chairman of Nuplex Industries. We are pleased to have appointed someone of Peter’s calibre.”
Mr Springford says he is excited to join Zespri’s Board as the company continues its strong growth. “Zespri is an international brand and a significant New Zealand company, with a unique focus on creating value for New Zealand kiwifruit growers. I am looking forward to the opportunity to contribute to its future success,” says Mr Springford.
The appointment comes into effect from 1 May, with David Pilkington retiring after 12 years as a director of Zespri.
“David is one of the most highly-regarded company directors in New Zealand and has made an outstanding contribution to Zespri and to the kiwifruit industry. This includes not only his role in chairing the Board Innovation Subcommittee but also his contribution to the Kiwifruit Industry Strategy Project. We thank David and wish him well for the future,” says Mr McBride.
Mr Pilkington reflects on his service to the Zespri Board and how the industry has grown and changed over that time. “Over the 12 years as a director of Zespri, I have been privileged to be involved with a cohesive industry that has worked together to overcome serious challenges, particularly with Psa, and is now on track to deliver impressive growth and transformation. The industry’s outlook is very bright,” says Mr Pilkington.