Li & Fung

Brother replaces brother at Li & Fung

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 19 May, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 19 May, 2011, 12:00am


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Victor Fung Kwok-king (right), the chairman of trading house Li & Fung, is to pass the helm to his brother in a management reshuffle that will push ahead an aggressive three-year business plan.

Managing director William Fung Kwok-lun was elevated to executive deputy chairman yesterday and will take the chairman's post at the annual shareholders meeting next year.

Executive director Bruce Rockowitz was appointed to the new positions of group president and chief executive, spearheading a target to double the group's core operating profit to US$1.5 billion by 2013 from US$725 million last year. He will also directly supervise nine new vice-presidents of core divisions.

Victor Fung said he would retain the role of a non-executive director and would lead the group's risk management and sustainable development.

He added that he would spend more time with Li & Fung's sister companies such as luxury menswear group Trinity, Circle-K operator Convenience Retail Asia, and privately owned toy retailer Toys (Labuan) Holding, as well as the family's charitable foundations - the Victor and William Fung Foundation and the Li & Fung (1906) Foundation.

A European brokerage's analyst said the change facilitated an expanded team designed to meet the group's three-year business targets. 'I don't think it will change the corporate strategies,' she said. 'Bruce and William have been the daily operators and now got better titles.'

Li & Fung shares jumped HK$1.25, or 3.47 per cent, to HK$37.30 yesterday after the reshuffle was announced in a statement to the stock exchange following the group's annual general meeting.

Although the Greek debt crisis was unfolding, William Fung said he was confident of meeting the targets on the back of a contract with retailer Wal-Mart Stores and economic recovery in the United States.

The three-year plan will beef up growth in three core divisions - trading, logistics and distribution services - on consumer goods ranging from lipstick, skincare, apparels, shoes to refrigerators and washing machines.