Cofra Holding hires new chief people officer

Retail, real estate, asset management, private equity and renewable energy firm Cofra Holding has recruited Jeroen Wels to be its new chief people officer from 1 September.

Wels will be replacing Ditri Zandstra, who has decided to step down after more than a decade of leadership at Cofra and the Anthos Family Office, where she helped to shape the group’s Vision 2030 and fostered a collaborative culture across the organisation.

With 25 years of senior role experience, Wels has spent the past 20 years working for Unilever in the UK, Spain and the Netherlands as group chief talent officer and chief human resources officer of the beauty and personal care unit. He currently serves as a senior adviser at the Boston Consulting Group and as founder of the People@Work Innovation Collective, a community of progressive senior HR leaders.

Wels said: “Cofra is a mission-driven enterprise and I am excited to join as it diversifies into new areas of business to increase its positive impact and encourage much-needed systemic change. I look forward to joining the Cofra team.”

Boudewijn Beerkens, chief executive officer of Cofra Holding, added: “I am pleased to welcome Jeroen Wels as our new chief people officer. [Wels] has a strong record of operational and strategic leadership and a passion for driving systemic change through business, both of which are natural fits for Cofra as we seek to be a force for good in society and the environment. Building a more adaptive organisation where people can grow, belong and matter is one of our key strategic priorities, and I’m confident [Wels] will play a leading role at Cofra.

“I want to thank [Zandstra] for her enormous contribution in professionalising the people function and for using her business acumen and leadership skills to unlock potential across our group. She has a been a valued member of Cofra’s management team and we wish her all the best in the future.”