Reckitt Benckiser Group plc’s (CEO), Laxman Narasimhan, will relinquish office on September 30.

Narasimhan has stepped down for personal and family reasons to move back to the and has been approached for an opportunity that enables him to live there, the said in its release.

Nicandro Durante, senior independent director, will officiate as as the board evaluates and selects the future leadership.

“The chairman and the nomination committee have begun the process to identify the best long-term candidate to take Reckitt on the next phase of its growth and transformation journey,” said in its release.

Narasimhan took over as in September 2019. He has led the rejuvenation of the company’s strategy, execution, and foundational capabilities.

“On behalf of the entire board, I want to thank Laxman for leading the organisation through a significant transformation over the last three years. We wish him and his family all the very best as he fulfils his desire to return to the United States,” Chris Sinclair, chairman of Reckitt, said in a statement.

Narasimhan said in the release: “I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to lead Reckitt. It is a great with an incredible team and I am extremely proud of what we have accomplished together in these last three years. I have been offered an opportunity to return to the and although it is difficult to leave, it is the right decision for me and

my family.”

Feather in his cap

  • Joins Reckitt in September 2019 from PepsiCo

  • Was first external candidate to take the helm at Reckitt since it was formed in 1999

  • Took strategic moves to sell parts of the portfolio like the firm’s infant formula business in China

  • Wrestled with supply chain challenges since the start of Covid-19

  • Was one of the few consumer-goods firms to upgrade its outlook for both sales growth, profitability

Challenges awaiting the new CEO

  • $7-billion disposal of Mead Johnson

  • Possible merger with Haleon

  • Will be able to make his or her mark by deciding where Reckitt fits in an industry rapidly reconfiguring itself

In June 2019, Narasimhan joined Reckitt Benckiser, leaving PepsiCo, where he was global chief commercial officer and was responsible for the food and beverage maker’s integrated long-term growth strategy.

At PepsiCo, he was a member of the company’s executive committee and reported to the chairman and chief executive.

His initial priorities when he joined were to focus on delivering out-performance, especially in the health business unit, and to drive RB2.0.

Narasimhan was also senior vice-president and chief financial officer of PepsiCo Americas Foods, and led the company’s food businesses for North, South, and Central America and the Caribbean during his stint at the .

Prior to PepsiCo, he served as director at McKinsey & Company.


He oversaw consumer-facing industries in India, spearheaded McKinsey’s research into the emerging-market digital consumer, co-led McKinsey’s global consumer and shopper insights practice, and its global retail knowledge council.

Narasimhan holds a degree in mechanical engineering from the College of Engineering, University of Pune, India.

He has an MA in German and International Studies from The Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA in Finance from The Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania.

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