Marleen Vaesen (Greenyard) wins the Vlerick Award 2017

Tonight Marleen Vaesen, CEO of Greenyard, has won the Vlerick Award 2017. The audience – who was able to vote both via internet as well as live at the event – chose her, because she led her company as business leader in its market segment with sustained results to the top.

Marleen Vaesen (Greenyard)

Almost 300 alumni, former winners and nominees, and VIPs attended the 17th Vlerick Award that took place on Thursday June 8 at Hôtel de la Poste in Brussels. The other nominees were:

  • Gaëtan Hannecart (Matexi)
  • Dieter Penninckx (FNG Group)
  • Conny Vandendriessche (House of HR / Stella P)

The central theme of the award was "Beyond Excellence". All the nominees boast so much more than merely everyday operational business skills. They excel both at international and strategic level.

Marleen Vaesen (°1959) is the CEO of Greenyard, a global leader in fresh and prepared fruits and vegetables and growing media. The group has a turnover of around 4 billion euro a year and has over 9,000 employees, of which 2,500 in Belgium. The group is operating in 25 countries, with 23 production sites and 34 distribution centers.

She started her career at Procter and Gamble in 1982 and executed different functions in marketing in Belgium and Europe, strongly driven by her strong interest in consumers.

In 1999, Marleen Vaesen was nominated President at Douwe Egberts Belgium, a subsidiary of Sara Lee. She was responsible for the retail activities, the out-of-home activities and the coffee roasting. She launched Senseo in Belgium, a revolution in the coffee market. In 2004, Marleen was appointed Senior Vice President. She founded the global marketing team and led the change towards a matrix organization with a central, global marketing team. She was responsible for the successful international roll out and growth of the Senseo business and development of innovations. In 2006 she assumed responsibility for the Coffee & Tea business in 8 European countries.

Marleen Vaesen became CEO of Pinguin Lutosa in 2012. Her key focus was on growing the business while strongly improving margins, driving REBITDA from 40 to 60 million euro. In 2015, when Greenyard Foods merged with Univeg and Peltracom, she became CEO of the new group Greenyard, a family business quoted in the stock market. Marleen lead the merger of the 3 companies. She transformed the different companies into 1 integrated group with a common vision, mission and values. The group has five common strategic priorities to drive profitable growth. The strategic proposition of the business is to be the added value partner for retails from fork to field by striving for excellence, day after day.

Marleen Vaesen graduated from the Catholic University of Leuven as Licentiate Applied Economics and obtained an MBA at the University of Chicago and an AMP from Harvard University. She is Director at Van de Velde.

About Vlerick Alumni
Vlerick Alumni, a non-profit organisation, is the official alumni organisation of Vlerick Business School. The organisation represents 20,000 alumni in 100 countries worldwide. Almost all of the alumni are active at management and director level within international and national companies and organisations. Vlerick Alumni's mission is to encourage Vlerick's former students in their growth, both personally and in companies and in society through professional networking and lifelong learning.

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