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Ilona Haaijer
DSM Food Specialties

Ms Haaijer, a Dutch national, is currently President of DSM Food Specialties, one of the five global divisions of Royal DSM NV. She joined DSM in 2010. She is currently based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands after having lived in Switzerland for 5 years.

Ms Haaijer is a seasoned senior executive, experienced in leading complex, global, multi currency and multi asset businesses in the B2C as well as B2B sectors. She is a passionate agent of change capable of forging a compelling vision and strategy, building and inspiring multi-cultural teams on all continents and achieving significant results - even in recessionary environments. She has skillfully lead several business transformations through eg effectively implementing major growth and change/downsizing programs, forging international partnerships, building strong effective teams and through acquisitions & integrations.

Ms Haaijer graduated in 1994 with a Masters Degree (Cum Laude) in Business Economics from the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen in the Netherlands incorporating studies at Schools of Management at Cornell University and UCLA in the USA. Her international career began in product development and marketing in Mobile Telecommunications with Koninklijke PTT Nederland before becoming a management consultant for The Boston Consulting Group where she spent 5 years in an international ‘fast track’ career path. Subsequently she joined Royal Philips Electronics NV as Vice President tasked to build the company’s new Consumer Health & Wellness business unit. Leading the acquisition of AVENT, the global no. 1 brand in infant feeding accessories, culminated with her appointment as CEO of Philips /AVENT, being in charge of the global combined business, including designing and implementing the integration and global rebranding. In 2010 Haaijer joined DSM as President DSM Personal Care and as Executive Committee member of the largest DSM division, DSM Nutritional Products.

In addition to her current role at DSM Ms Haaijer was appointed independent Non-Executive Director at RPC Group Plc, Europe’s leading supplier of rigid plastic packaging and a UK FTSE 250 company, in June 2012. A role she held for the full tenure until June 2015.

In 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 she was recognized as one of 50 senior executives under 45 from the Netherlands who are seen as “CEO’s of the Future” by leading Dutch business magazine Management Team.

Ms Haaijer has an international career and has lived in the Netherlands, the USA, the UK, Australia, Singapore and Switzerland. Her passions include mentoring young professional females, the arts, good food & good wine in good company with inspiring conversations and attempting to stay fit.

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