Birds Eye's Lo leaves after Unilever sell-off

Helen Lo, comms chief at Unilever's Ice Cream and Frozen Foods division, has resigned following the sale of its struggling Birds Eye business to private equity firm Permira.

Lo, who is head of corporate affairs for the division, said she would leave on 3 November, having chosen not to work for Birds Eye's new owner. Lo said she is ‘having time out' rather than taking a new job right away.

As well as frozen foods, Lo has responsibility for the FMCG company's Wall's ice cream business. She joined in 2002 as head of CSR and was promoted to her present role in 2004 (PRWeek, 29 Oct 2004), reporting to Unilever UK chairman Gavin Neath.

Unilever is undergoing a comms restructure following the £1.1bn sale of Birds Eye, which is expected to be completed in November. The firm said the full details of the restructure have yet to be hammered out.

Sales of frozen food and ready meals have suffered in recent years as consumers increasingly opt for fresh or chilled alternatives that are perceived to be healthier.

The Permira deal sees all of Unilever's frozen food operations move to the firm, with the exception of Italy, which has bucked the trend and posted growth.

Lo helped co-ordinate the pitch that led to Blue Rubicon taking sole control of ­the Unilever UK corporate account last year (PRWeek, 8 April 2005).

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