Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages (HCCB) today announced that Neeraj Garg, the current chairman and CEO of the company, will retire in 2022.
In Garg’s place, Juan Pablo Rodriguez, currently chief commercial officer for Bottling Investments Group (BIG), is appointed as general manager and chief executive officer for HCCB, and will begin transition from September 2022.
"In the last two years, Rodriguez has led the BIG commercial team in achieving significant growth ambitions, transforming our channel strategy, and ensuring we continue to win in the market through capability-building and portfolio innovation," the company said in a statement.
A 22-year veteran of the Coca-Cola system with a proven track record of leading teams and driving sustainable growth across markets, he will be responsible for ensuring that HCCB continues to achieve its growth ambitions and trajectory in one of largest operations in the BIG network.
“Juan Pablo joins the team as a seasoned leader with experience across developed and developing markets and extensive commercial experience. I am confident he will take the strong franchise that HCCB has built in the beverage space to even greater heights and capture the growth potential that India offers,” said Murat Ozgel, president, BIG of The Coca-Cola Company.
Garg took over the responsibility of HCCB in 2020, at a time when the company was facing heightened socio-economic tension due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He played a significant role in continuing the growth story of the company including delivering some of the best financial results ever.
“Throughout his career, Neeraj has brought to life his passion for people development by being an active mentor for talent across The Coca-Cola Company. He has played a key role in championing strong end-to-end business management capabilities in teams and growing talent across markets. I would like to thank him for his contributions to the HCCB team over the last couple of years. He will leave behind a strong legacy,” said Ozge, announcing Garg’s retirement.
“HCCB has built a strong business foundation in an economy that is already taking significant strides. Its strength is not just its manufacturing capabilities and distribution footprint but also the focus on its people, sustainability, and community work. HCCB is among the high users of green energy in manufacturing, collects and recycles 100% of the plastic waste, and replenishes more water than it uses. It is now on a mission to plant 25 lakh trees. I am so thankful to the stellar team that makes everything possible. It has been a privilege to lead this team,” said Garg, speaking on his journey at HCCB.