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L’Oréal Chief Jean-Paul Agon Talks Succession

He expects to step down as ceo in 2021, sometime between group’s AGM and his birthday on July 6.

PARIS — Jean-Paul Agon expects to pass the baton to L’Oréal’s sixth chief executive officer in 2021, sometime between the beauty giant’s annual shareholder meeting, traditionally in April, and his 65th birthday on July 6.

A company spokeswoman confirmed the information, which appeared in an interview with Agon published in Le Monde newspaper, dated March 7.

It is L’Oréal’s policy that a ceo’s succession takes place prior to the executive’s 65th birthday.

L’Oréal’s nomination committee will select candidates. In turn, it will propose one candidate to the company’s board of directors. In the Le Monde interview, Agon said the priority will be given to an internal candidate.

Many people believe Nicolas Hieronimus is Agon’s heir apparent. In April 2017, Hieronimus was appointed as L’Oréal’s deputy ceo, a newly created position that put him second in command.

Agon succeeded Lindsay Owen-Jones as L’Oréal’s ceo in 2006, while Owen-Jones remained on for five more years as company chairman, until March 2011, when Agon became chairman and ceo. Agon envisages the upcoming succession to follow a similar path.

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L’Oréal is the world’s largest beauty maker. In 2019, it registered sales of 29.87 billion euros.