Harish Manwani, currently the non-executive chairman of Hindustan Lever, has been elevated by the FMCG giant to its global operations.
Manwani will take over as the chief operating officer (COO) of Unilever with effect from 1 September, and would take responsibility for all markets ''in order to drive speed-to-market behind further simplification and efficiency''. Unilever, which employs a workforce 167,000 strong, generated annual sales of £44.3 billion in 2010.
Currently president of Unilever Asia, Africa and non-executive chairman of Hindustan Unilever, Manwani joined Hindustan Lever (HLL) in 1976 rising to become a member of the HLL board in1995 as director responsible for the personal products business.
As category leader for personal products, he also held regional responsibility for the Central Asia and Middle East business group, moving in 2000 to the UK. He took over as senior vice president, global hair care and oral care there, and in 2001 was appointed president, home and personal care, Latin America business group.
Manwani also served as chairman of Unilever's Latin America Advisory Council and in 2004 was appointed president and CEO of the HPC North America business group.
In April 2005 he joined the Unilever Executive as president, Asia, Africa.
Manwani, graduated from Mumbai University with a master's degree in management studies and also attended the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School.