Major foodservice equipment manufacturing group, Middleby Corporation, has shaken up its senior management positions in response to the retirement of chairman, president and CEO Selim Bassoul.
Timothy FitzGerald has been promoted to the CEO role, as well as becoming a member of the Board of Directors. He has served as the group’s CFO since 2003, having first joined in 1998.
Bassoul now plans to focus on his family and his humanitarian efforts through his Bassoul Dignity Foundation, though he will still serve as a consultant to the Middleby board.
Elsewhere, David Brewer has been promoted to the US-headquartered company’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. During his 12 years at Middleby, Brewer led growth initiatives for the Commercial Foodservice Group and was responsible for launching the Middleby national accounts team. The firm reported that Brewer also has been instrumental in developing and directing supply chain initiatives over the past several years.
Furthermore, Bryan Mittelman, chief accounting officer, has been promoted to the CFO role left vacant by FitzGerald’s promotion. Mittelman will work closely with Martin Lindsay, corporate treasurer, also an officer of the company, who has 20 years of senior-level finance experience with the company. Additionally, Gordon O’Brien, who has served as lead independent director of the Middleby board since 2010, has been named chairman of the board.
O’Brien said: “On behalf of the entire Board, I want to thank Selim for his inspired leadership of Middleby over the past 18 years.
“Under his direction, Middleby transformed its business portfolio, expanded globally and enhanced its position as a leading manufacturer of commercial, residential and food processing equipment and we wish him the best in his retirement.”
He continued: “Many in the industry know Tim well, as he has worked closely with Selim over the past two decades. Tim has been an architect of the Middleby business strategy and has led the acquisition efforts, developing three industry-leading platforms through more than 70 brand acquisitions.
“Under the leadership of Selim and Tim, Middleby revenue has grown from $100m to approaching $3bn, and they have created significant shareholder value as the market cap has grown from $40m to approximately $7bn today.
“As CFO, Tim not only has led the finance organisation, but he has been involved in all areas of the company and worked closely with each of the management teams as they have joined Middleby through acquisitions. We are confident Tim, Dave and the entire management team will continue to move Middleby forward and we expect a seamless transition.”
FitzGerald himself added: “I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to work with Selim over the past 20 years.
“I am proud of what we have accomplished with the many talented executives on the Middleby team. Together we have built a truly unique company of leading brands, technologies, capabilities and people. We have achieved success over the years through organic growth, international expansion, innovative engineering and strategic acquisitions. Under Selim’s leadership, we have established a strong and lasting culture of innovation and customer focus. I am honoured to serve as CEO and continue the journey with Dave, Bryan, Martin and our very dedicated management team.”
While Bassoul concluded: “It has been an honour to be associated with this outstanding company for more than 23 years. I am grateful for the team we created and their commitment to the execution of our vision. I am thankful for the many personal relationships I have had the pleasure of building with customers, employees and others in the industry over the years. My heartfelt appreciation goes out to each of our 10,000 employees around the world for their support and unwavering commitment to customer care and innovation.
“This is the right time for me personally to transition to the next generation of leadership. Middleby is well positioned for the future with a strong team and a solid foundation. I am blessed to have worked with a dedicated board of directors that allowed us to implement our strategy. I fully support Tim, Dave and Bryan in their new roles and I am confident that they will excel in their new positions.”
In the UK, the Middleby Corporation owns the Lincat, FriFri, IMC, Britannia Kitchen Ventilation and Middleby UK companies, along with the Southbend, Pitco, TurboChef, Middleby Marshall, CTX, CookTek, Holman, Star, Blodgett, Houno and Giga brands.