NEW YORK — Robert Amen, formerly president of International Paper Co., nabbed the top job at International Flavors and Fragrances Inc. The fragrance house named Amen, 56, chief executive officer and chairman effective July 1.
He will take over for Arthur Martinez, who has served as interim chairman and ceo since Richard Goldstein retired at the company’s annual meeting on May 9. Martinez will return to his role as lead director of IFF.
Amen held a number of different roles with International Paper in his 26 years with the company before becoming president in 2003. His experience building the paper company’s international strategy as president of IP Europe should help him mobilize IFF’s global platform, which grew tremendously under Goldstein’s tenure.
How a paper company executive fits into a flavor and fragrance company may not be immediately obvious. When Spencer Stuart initially was tapped to head the executive search, industry insiders speculated that a food executive from a company such as Nestlé or Kraft or another consumer products firm would be the next leader of IFF, or that an executive might be promoted internally. Still, Amen’s global brand-building experience and IP’s involvement in sourcing, manufacturing, distributing and selling products should suit the broad range of duties covered by IFF’s ceo.