Avon Appoints Digital Board Officers
Benedetto Conversano is joining Avon Products in the newly created role of senior vice president and chief digital and information technology officer.
The position will fill the vacancy being created by the retirement of Sue Liddie, group vice president and chief information officer, but will encompass additional responsibilities including leading Avon's digital strategy. Conversano will report to Jonathan Myers, executive vice president and chief operating officer, and to chief executive officer Jan Zijderveld in his duties leading a new digital board for Avon.
He will be responsible for developing a new digital strategy as a foundational element of Avon's future plans while building, developing and standardizing technology solutions and delivery across the global organization. The digital board will comprise digital, commercial and other business leaders.
"We are thrilled for the opportunity to benefit from Benedetto's proven, strong strategic, consumer-focused digital, technological and operational skillset ... [He has] played a pioneering role in helping some of the world's best-known brands deploy consumer-friendly digital platforms," said Zijderveld. "Avon is undergoing a period of significant change, and customer-friendly digital interfaces, supported by a much more efficient technology infrastructure and rich data analytics, are a key strategic driver of the organization's future progress."
"This is an exciting time for Avon and I am eager to jump in ... during a turnaround," said Conversano. "I look forward to working with Jan, Jonathan and Avon's executive leadership team to grow the company's digital platform for the six million representatives and their customers and to execute a strong global IT strategy to drive efficiencies across the organization."
Conversano has experience developing and implementing digital, e-commerce and IT strategies across global organizations. He most recently served as global CIO at Jeronimo Martins, an international food, health and beauty retailer, where he was responsible for global strategy to "grow efficient, digital and consumer-relevant" transformation.
Prior to Jeronimo Martins, Conversano was the architect of Ikea's digital transformation, steering the development of a global multi-channel, e-commerce capability that has evolved the company's business model while leading the development and implementation of its global IT strategy. He also spent 15 years at Procter & Gamble, where he built CRM, ERP and sales force automation systems that helped to transform the business; he also built one of P&G's first "Big Data" systems.
"I would like to thank Sue Liddie for many achievements during the last eight years with the business. She has helped to transform the IT function, while helping to deliver some key representative IT initiatives into key markets," added Zijderveld.
Additionally, Avon has appointed Heather Payne as chief technology officer, reporting into Conversano. She previously served as CTO for DMG media (Daily Mail Group) where she oversaw IT changes across all functions of the business, including completing the transformation of technology and change process and co-creating the innovation strategy for the business.
Prior to this, Payne was group head of IT for hotel inventory and complementary at Thomas Cook Group, where she was responsible for a program that established a new business model, platform and organization, leading teams across Europe. She also held senior roles in IT for Hotels4U, Avis and Ford.