MINNEAPOLIS — General Mills, Inc. is restructuring its business structure to capitalize on opportunities around digital, data and technology, and e-commerce, according to the company. While the exact details of the restructuring have not been publicly announced, it may entail the elimination of staff and the sale of properties.
“To be clear, this is not simply a cost-cutting exercise,” said Jeffrey L. Harmening, chairman and chief executive officer, on May 20 during a virtual presentation at the BMO Capital Markets Farm to Markets Conference. “The goal of this initiative is to free up resources from parts of our organization and redeploy them into more growth-facing areas, such as digital and data and technology, e-commerce and strategic revenue management and other capabilities that are critical to our future success.”
During the presentation, Harmening announced several changes to General Mills’ leadership team. Dana McNabb, who leads the company’s European and Australian segments, will become chief strategy and growth officer, a newly created position. Sean Walker, who is responsible for Asia and Latin America, will add Europe and Australia to his responsibilities.
John Church, chief supply chain officer will transition to the new role of chief transformation and enterprise services officer. Paul Gallagher, who is currently responsible for General Mills’ North American supply chain, will become chief supply chain officer.
In a June 4 filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, General Mills said it expects to incur charges related to the reorganization of approximately $160 million in fiscal 2021, primarily reflecting severance expenses.
“We expect these actions to be completed by the end of fiscal 2023 with a total cost of approximately $170 million to $220 million, of which approximately $130 million to $180 million will be cash,” the company said.
A story published June 3 by the StarTribune in Minnesota provided some details of the reorganization plan. General Mills’ North America retail business will consolidate from five operating units to three and close offices in Berkeley, Calif., and Austin, Texas, according to the newspaper.