OAKLAND, CA, Sept. 12, 2014 (PPI Pulp & Paper Week) -In a largely expected move that came earlier than anticipated, International Paper (IP) directors elected COO Mark Sutton as new CEO effective Nov. 1, and as chmn effective Jan. 1.
CEO John Faraci will leave the top position on Oct. 31 and the role of chmn on Dec. 31. He remains a special adviser until he retires on Feb. 28, after leading the company since 2003.
IP is the world's largest paper and board producer by capacity, with mills in the US, Brazil, China, Europe, India, and Russia.
Sutton, who was previously Sr VP of Industrial Packaging, was named COO in June, putting him in a top position to succeed Faraci along with CFO Carol Roberts and Sr VP Timothy Nicholls.
"Mark Sutton's election as CEO and chairman and the other changes we are announcing today reaffirm International Paper's ongoing commitment to developing a strong, deep bench that will lead the company to an even more successful future," Faraci said on Sept. 8. "Under Mark's leadership, I am confident that International Paper's best days are ahead."
Sutton spent his entire career with IP since joining the company in 1984.
Nicholls this week was named Sr VP industrial packaging effective Nov. 1, and will continue to report to Sutton. His previous positions also included CFO, VP of finance, and VP and CFO of IP Europe. He also recently led the company's communication papers business. He has been with the company since 1991.
"The choice of Sutton was somewhat of a surprise," Deutsche Bank analyst Debbie Jones said. "That said, his resume at IP rivals that of any other candidate."
Faraci is departing IP having just been named RISI's North American CEO of the Year and is credited with transforming the company by shifting away from timberlands and wood products, and focusing on packaging and printing paper.
"The acquisitions of Weyerhaeuser and Temple-Inland's containerboard mill and corrugated assets were considered to be quite effective and supportive of the industry's more rational structure," Jones said.
IP on Sept. 8 also announced several other executive changes.
Thomas Kadien was named Sr VP, human resources, communications, and global government relations along with current responsibilities for supply chain and IP India, effective Nov. 1. He is now Sr VP, North American consumer packaging, with responsibilities for operations in India and China. He has been with IP since 1978. Kadien succeeds Paul Karre, who will retire following a period of transition. He has been with the company since 1974.
William Hoel, who was acting Sr VP of industrial packaging, will resume his role as Sr VP, Container the Americas.
W. Michael Amick Jr. was elected Sr VP, North American papers, pulp, and consumer packaging, effective Nov. 1, and will report to Sutton. He is now pres of IP India, and as exec chmn, International Paper APPM Ltd. Prior to his role in India, Amick was VP and general mgr for the coated paperboard business. He has been with IP since 1990.
Glenn Landau was elected Sr VP, and will continue as pres of IP Latin America, with responsibilities for operations in Brazil. Rampraveen Swaminathan was named pres of IP India, and will report to Kadien. Swaminathan is now managing dir of IP APPM.