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Vasiliki Petrou steps down as CEO of Unilever Prestige

Women's Tabloid News Desk
Women's Tabloid News Desk

Vasiliki Petrou, the driving force behind Unilever’s Prestige Division, is stepping down as CEO after ten years of transforming the division into a €1.4 billion powerhouse. Her departure was announced on LinkedIn, where she expressed her intention to launch her own investment fund.

Petrou was recruited by Unilever a decade ago to establish the Prestige Division from scratch, starting with the acquisition of Dermalogica in 2015 for approximately US$1 billion. During her tenure, she expanded the division to encompass 11 brands, including K-18 Biomimetic Hair Science.

Despite achieving significant growth, with a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12% from 2019 to 2023 and 12 consecutive quarters of expansion, the Prestige Division remains smaller in scale compared to Unilever’s mass-market Personal Care and Beauty & Wellbeing divisions, which reported sales of €14 billion and €12 billion respectively in 2023.

Petrou’s departure aligns with CEO Hein Schumacher’s strategy to enhance Unilever’s portfolio through a focus on billion-euro power brands and the divestiture of the ice cream business.

Reflecting on her decision, Petrou remarked on LinkedIn,“Being the Unilever Prestige Founder and CEO has been a great honour and I’m proud of the many milestones we achieved together: A portfolio of 10 beautiful brands in just 10 years; becoming a €1.4B global portfolio and consistently growing ahead of the market.”

She also shared on Instagram that she made the difficult decision to leave “in pursuit of my dream to set up my own investment fund.⁣” Petrou concluded her post with a commitment to Unilever’s consumers, emphasizing the continued dedication to delivering joy, beauty, and wellness solutions worldwide.

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