Avon divides its Latin American business in two

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Avon divides its Latin American business in two

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Avon Products has announced the division of its Latin American business, which will soon be separated into southern and northern countries as part of aims to strengthen marketing and field management.

The move is part of the company restructuring plan, which is a multiyear turnaround plan designed at making the business more efficient and profitable.

The focus of the reorganization will see the business split into the northern Latin American market consisting of Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, and  Dominican Republic as well as the Andean Cluster, which is comprised of Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, and Venezuela.

Responsibility for this market will go to Fernando Acosta, who is currently the senior vice president and vice president, Latin America, who is also being appointed as Avon's head of global brand marketing as part of moves to restructure the company's marketing organization.

Acosta is been with the company for three years and has previously spent 19 years at Unilever, where he undertook a number of senior marketing and operating positions.

The new Southern Market Group

The southern market group will be led by David Legher, who is currently senior vice president and president of Avon Brazil, which is by far the largest and most important market in the Latin American region.

Legher, who is a 13 year veteran of the company having held a variety of positions in the Latin America market, will maintain his responsibility for the Brazil market and extend his executive responsibilities to also include the markets of Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay.

"Latin America is our largest region representing more than half of our annual revenue. Driving growth in our Latin American markets is a top priority for Avon, and adjusting the business management responsibilities between two seasoned Avon executives will allow for better management focus and sustained growth,"​ said Sheryl McCoy, Avon Products CEO.

"David has a deep knowledge of the Avon business, particularly in Latin America, and he will add a strong market perspective to the Executive Committee."

Field operation appointment

The company also announced that John Higson, vice president and president of Europe, Middle East, Africa, will take on the expanded role of head of global field operations.

In this position, Higson will provide assessment and advisory support to the sales teams in Avon's top 12 markets, aiming to accelerate the effectiveness of new sales heads to ensure they are effective in the roles as quickly as possible.

The company also announced a series of additional actions to its $400 million cost saving initiative, which include various supply chain efficiencies that will result in contract terminations, as well as further job cuts that will lead to a further $40 million in cost savings.

No details of the contract terminations or job reductions were given.

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