Vion: Focus on core business

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Vion Food Group has sold its pork business in the United Kingdom.

The previous director of the Pork division, Seamus Carr, has taken over the business in a management buy-out. Peter Barr, Vion UK, expressed his hope that successful negotiations can now be conducted regarding the Poultry, Beef and Lamb divisions.

In its home market, Vion is pressing ahead with its efforts to focus on the core business: the preserved goods producer Baltussen is taking over Oerlemanns Foods and its 740 employees. Decisions will be made regarding Germany in the next few weeks.

The strategic reorganisation of Vion Deutschland (Germany) involves discontinuing the North and South business units, consolidating the service departments and closing a number of sites.

In an interview conducted with "Lebensmittel Zeitung", Norbert Barfuss, the head of the German operations, announced a reorganisation of the business. Barfuss is expecting the group's board of directors to pass the relevant resolutions by the end of February. The most far-reaching change is likely to be the abolition of the organisational division into North and South units and the changeover to Pork and Beef divisions.

This is expected to yield more intensive bundling of procurement and distribution activities. The restructuring involves devolving control of these functions to the regions. "The main focus is not on centralisation but on achieving significantly more effective coordination. The decision-making authority therefore remains in the individual locations," emphasises the Vion manager.

Barfuss regards the distributed nature of the sites as a competitive advantage. He does not, however, rule out the possibility of reducing the number of sites.
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