Leading Australian supplements brand Blackmores has appointed former Proctor & Gamble and Nestle executive Alastair Symington as its new chief executive officer. 

Symington will pick up a reported AUD300,000 sign-up payment and be paid a basic salary of AUD in the role. 

The company will hope that Symington’s wide, senior level experience in consumer goods – having worked with Nestle, Gillette, Procter & Gamble and Coty among others across multiple geographies – will rebuild investor confidence in the business. In February, the supplements company warned that sales in China are not expected to grow within the next six months and in April reported a 14.3 per cent fall in profit for the first nine months of the financial year.

Symington’s knowledge and experience of the crucial China market (Symington learnt Mandarin during a posting to Shanghai), will be considered a particularly valuable asset.

Welcoming Symington on board, Blackmores chairman, Brent Wallace, said: “Alastair brings the right mix of knowledge, experience and skill that is required to drive the Blackmores Group’s growth strategy and seize on the opportunities available to our business across the APAC region.

““Alastair has an extensive sales and marketing background in the FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) category and importantly, he has significant in-country Asia and China experience including cross border e-commerce and retail.”

“Product innovation and education is a key priority for Blackmores in China. Alastair’s deep understanding of China and proven track-record in product innovation will enable us to continue growing in this important market.”

Symington commented: “I am incredibly excited to be joining Blackmores. The company has an unrivalled history in natural health and I firmly believe the opportunities are significant.

“I am committed to delivering on the company’s strategy to drive substantial top-line growth via a greater presence of Blackmores throughout the region, and ensuring that we are more efficient as a business delivering superior results for shareholders.”

Photo: Blackmores