Teresa Ciprian has become the first woman to be appointed to the board of kiwifruit export entity Zespri.
Ms Ciprian's appointment as an independent director recognised her expertise in global brand marketing and business development, Zespri chairman Peter McBride said.
Ms Ciprian spent 12 years at senior levels in Danone, a global dairy consumer products company operating in more than 140 countries. Since returning to New Zealand, Ms Ciprian has advised a number of internationally focused businesses on their growth strategies and has developed a governance portfolio that also includes the boards of Firstlight Foods Ltd, AgResearch, Aspeq and Aviation New Zealand.
"We're very pleased to have Teresa's experience in both international business development and health marketing on the Zespri board," Mr McBride said.
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"As the kiwifruit industry heads into a period of strong growth, it's even more important that we have a broad range of strong governance skills on the board."
Ms Ciprian said her passions for agriculture, food-related businesses, brand New Zealand, consumer brands and consumers, were combined in Zespri.
"Zespri is a strong brand and a New Zealand business with significant global potential," she said. "The industry has a goal of increasing export revenue to $3 billion by 2025 and I welcome the opportunity to contribute to this success."
Ms Ciprian, who began her career as a technician in the dairy industry, has a background in the commercialisation, innovation, marketing and business development of dairy products, functional beverages and other foods.
She held senior roles with Danone in the United States and France, where she worked in international markets.
Her primary focus was on identifying, developing and delivering global growth initiatives with central and locally based teams.