Carlsberg bids goodbye to outgoing MD and welcomes new man
IT WAS a bittersweet farewell for Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd’s outgoing managing director Henrik Juel Andersen.
Having led the company for more than three years, Andersen will be passing on the baton to Lars Lehmann and moving on to head Lao Brewery Company Ltd where he will oversee businesses in Laos and Cambodia.
During the aptly themed “Change of Coach” cocktail reception to bid goodbye to Andersen and welcome Lehmann on board, Andersen expressed joy over the course of his stay with the company.
Lehmann (right) receives a jersey with his name on it from Andersen to mark the handover.
“As I look back at the last three years, I think we’ve managed to make good progress in a lot of areas in the business.
“We’ve strengthened and streamlined our portfolio of brands, saw the latest addition of a new draught stout that’s off to a great start and the growth of our market share in quite a few categories,” shared Andersen.
“We’ve also turned our business in Singapore around, which is now stronger and growing rapidly.”
Andersen said Carlsberg Malaysia has been able to deliver a growing top line revenue and profit for its shareholders despite the tough macro environment in the country.
“Truth is, it’s the team that has helped make this success – employees, partners, customers and distributors.
“I only play a small role in this and am very proud to be part of it,” he said in his parting speech.
Andersen first took to Carlsberg Malaysia when he joined the company for a year in 1995.
He jumped at the chance to be back to helm the business almost 20 years later, a role he said he was privileged and honoured to have held.
Upon being handed a jersey with his name on it to symbolise the “change of coach”, Lehmann expressed enthusiasm for his new position.
“Carlsberg Malaysia has always been an iconic company within the Carlsberg Group; I’m really privileged to be the new managing director, and overlook responsibilities in Sri Lanka and Singapore as well,” he said.
He has eased into his new role, with Andersen’s help.
“Over the last three weeks, I’ve travelled around with Henrik to get to know employees and trade partners. This has certainly been useful.
“He welcomed me, shared insights about the business and people, and made it so much easier to take over,” Lehmann added.
Under Andersen’s leadership, Lehmann said Carlsberg Malaysia has grown both in the top and bottom line.
“Henrik has laid a very strong foundation for the business, and I have the responsibility of taking it forward from now on,” he noted.
While he may be relatively new in Asia, Lehmann has already noticed that business relationships in the region are very different from Europe.
“It is warm and positive, and that goes for employees, customers, distributors, shareholders, regulators and the community.”
Lehmann has been with the Carlsberg Group for 13 years, overseeing various operations in Eastern and Western Europe, completed mergers and acquisitions in Russia, re-engineered the global export business and turned around a few western Europe operations into profitable businesses.
Prior to this appointment, he was the regional chief executive officer for the Western Europe Challenger Markets, responsible for 11 European markets such as Germany, Italy, Greece and Bulgaria.