Major reshuffle at Sime Darby

by MARK RAO

Sime Darby Bhd announced leadership changes for each of its three pure plays last week, as the conglomerate edges closer to separately listing its business units this year.

Sime Darby Bhd current chairman Tan Sri Abdul Ghani Othman said all three entities will be led by individuals who have the required skills and experience to manage large and complex organisations.

“We are confident that all three pure plays have the right leadership to take the companies forward in these challenging times,” Abdul Ghani said in a statement last Friday.

“Their task is to grow the businesses and their challenge is to achieve this while delivering consistent returns for all their stakeholders.”

Tan Sri Dr Wan Abdul Aziz Wan Abdullah will helm Sime Darby itself, serving as the chairman of the company primarily engaged in the automotive and industrial sectors via wholly-owned subsidiaries Sime Darby Motors and Sime Darby Industrial.

Wan Abdul, 65, who has served the conglomerate since December 10, 2012 is presently the Group’s deputy chairman.

He is a nominee and board member of unit trust Permodalan Nasional Bhd (PNB) and chairman for Bank Pembangunan Malaysia Bhd, Sime Darby Motors Sdn Bhd and other private limited companies.
Jeffri Salim Davidson – now deputy group CFO of Sime Darby – will take over as president and group chief executive.

Jeffri, 51, held various senior leadership positions in Sime Darby, including China Engineers Ltd MD.
Datuk Lawrence Lee Cheow Hock, Scott William Cameron and Timothy Lee Chi Tim will all act as MDs for subsidiaries Sime Darby Motors, Sime Darby Industrial and Sime Darby Logistics respectively.

Abdul Ghani, meanwhile, will continue as the chairman of Sime Darby Plantation Bhd.

Abdul Ghani, 70, is also the incumbent independent non-executive director and chairman of the Sime Darby group and was appointed to the board on July 1, 2013.

He is currently a member of the board of trustees for the World Islamic Economic Forum Foundation and an advisor of City University College of Science & Technology.

The plantation arm of Sime Darby group also sees Tan Sri Mohd Bakke Salleh (pic) assuming his duties of executive deputy chairman and MD.

Mohd Bakke, 63, has been the incumbent president and group chief executive of Sime Darby for the last seven years.

When leading operations for Sime Darby, Mohd Bakke was responsible for the group exiting the oil and gas business during its rationalisation exercise.

Datuk Franki Anthony Dass and Renaka Ramachandran will assume the roles of chief advisor and value officer and CFO respectively for the plantation division.

Meanwhile, Sime Darby Property will be headed by Tan Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, acting as the property company’s chairman.

Abdul Wahid, 53, was appointed as PNB group chairman on August 1 last year. He was also previously Malayan Banking Group president and CEO and Telekom Malaysia Bhd group CEO.

Datuk Seri Amrin Awaluddin will be MD for Sime Darby Property and is tasked in leading the property division during a challenging time for both the industry and company itself.

Amrin, 49, previously held the role of MD for Media Prima Group since September 1, 2009.

Datuk Tong Poh Keow will be the ED and CFO for the property company.