Philip Morris International’s Latest Hire to Accelerate a Smoke-Free Future

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Philip Morris International’s Latest Hire to Accelerate a Smoke-Free Future

By CGT Staff - 09/03/2020

Philip Morris International Inc. has appointed Gregoire Verdeaux to the position of senior vice president external affairs effective September 1, 2020. In his new role, Verdeaux will report to the company’s CEO, André Calantzopoulos. 

“Gregoire’s range of experiences — from working for national and E.U. parliaments and governments, the U.N., WHO, as well as private companies undergoing significant transformation — has given him a unique understanding of how political decisions are made. This makes him an ideal candidate to join us at PMI and help adapt the regulatory environment applicable to reduced risk products, as we continue our transformation to a smoke-free company,” said Calantzopoulos.

Verdeaux joins PMI from Hering Schuppener, where he was a partner. Prior to that, he served as group international policy director at Vodafone. At Vodafone, he built a team from the ground up focused on enabling the business with integrated regulatory strategies, such as ensuring license to operate in sensitive emerging markets in Africa and Asia. He directly engaged with high-level decision-makers in E.U. institutions and oversaw the coordination of policy, lobbying, antitrust, compliance, and other activities while supporting 12 national markets. He also worked to obtain fair competition in the broadband market between private investors and traditional incumbent competitors at the E.U. level.

Prior to Vodafone, Verdeaux served as European policy director at Electricité De France (EDF), where he proposed and designed group positions for key negotiations with the E.U. regarding competition, state aid cases, and top energy policy issues, especially nuclear energy.

Verdeaux’s highly relevant experience also includes a wealth of expertise in the public and NGO sectors. He served at the local level as deputy head of the cabinet of the French President, as administrator to the French senate and cabinet adviser to the minister of Foreign Affairs and to the European Commission. Additionally, he held the positions of director, strategy and finance, Unitaid, for the World Health Organization and manager in the United Nations Development Program.

This appointment follows the previous announcement of long-serving executive Marc Firestone’s intention to retire from the dual roles of president, external affairs and general counsel, and the appointment of Suzanne Rich Folsom as senior vice president and general counsel.

Philip Morris International: Delivering a Smoke-Free Future

Reduced risk products (RRPs) is the term PMI uses to refer to products that present, are likely to present, or have the potential to present less risk of harm to smokers who switch to these products versus continuing smoking. PMI has a range of RRPs in various stages of development, scientific assessment, and commercialization. PMI’s RRPs are smoke-free products that produce an aerosol that contains far lower quantities of harmful and potentially harmful constituents than found in cigarette smoke.

Philip Morris International (PMI) is leading a transformation in the tobacco industry to create a smoke-free future and ultimately replace cigarettes with smoke-free products to the benefit of adults who would otherwise continue to smoke, society, the company, and its shareholders.

The company is engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes, as well as smoke-free products and associated electronic devices and accessories, and other nicotine-containing products in markets outside the United States. In addition, PMI ships a version of its IQOS Platform 1 device and its consumables authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to Altria Group, Inc. for sale in the U.S. under license.

PMI is building a future on a new category of smoke-free products that, while not risk-free, are a much better choice than continuing to smoke. Through multidisciplinary capabilities in product development, state-of-the-art facilities and scientific substantiation, PMI aims to ensure that its smoke-free products meet adult consumer preferences and rigorous regulatory requirements.