Chr. Hansen Holding A/S appoints new Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer

Chr. Hansen Holding A/S appoints new Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer
Press ReleaseDec 06. 2016 14:18 GMT

Chr. Hansen Holding A/S has entered into an agreement with Thomas Schäfer to take up the position of Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer.

Thomas is currently employed as Vice President at Novozymes and will take up his new position as soon as possible, expected during the spring of 2017.He will report to the CEO and become a member of the Executive Board.

A German national, Thomas completed his Ph.D. in Microbiology, Physiology & Biochemistry and worked as Assistant Professor at Freie Universität Berlin. He started his career in Novozymes as a PostDoc in 1994 and has held various senior leadership positions in the R&D space in Novozymes since. Since 2013 Thomas has been based in the US.

Thomas has more than 20 years of experience in Industrial Microbiology, R&D, Innovation, Business Development and Mergers & Acquisitions, covering both bacteria and enzymes, and he has published several papers, and he is also the co-inventor on a number of patents.

Thomas will lead Chr. Hansen’s scientific organization for Food Cultures and Enzymes, and for Health and Nutrition (the R&D organization for the Microbial Solutions Platform). This organization consists of 210 employees, largely based at company headquarters in Denmark. Currently the core activities are organized in 5 departments: Discovery, Development, Process, Analytics and Resource & Planning.

Including Thomas Schäfer into the Executive Board is a signal of the importance Chr. Hansen places on its innovation and science as an area critical in securing continuous growth. Thomas brings extensive experience from various disciplines and segments in the scientific space.

“In hiring Thomas, Chr. Hansen brings onboard a very skilled and business-oriented technology leader with international experience. The overall goal of the R&D Microbial Platform is to secure a common and strong scientific backbone within industrial microbes that can sustain new innovations for the Food Cultures & Enzymes and Health & Nutrition Business Units and support Chr. Hansen’s undisputed leadership in bacterial fermentation technology. I am happy to welcome Thomas to the Executive Board”, says CEO Cees de Jong.

“I really look forward to joining Chr. Hansen. I have followed the fantastic growth of this company for many years, so it is great to become a part of the journey”, says Thomas Schäfer.

Once Thomas has joined, the Executive Board will consist of: CEO Cees de Jong, CFO Søren Westh Lonning, COO Knud Vindfeldt, and CSO Thomas Schäfer.


For media inquiries:
Camilla Lercke, Head of Media Relations DKCALE@chr-hansen.com, Tel: +45 53 39 23 84

For investor relations:
Anders Mohr Christensen, Vice President, Investor Relations DKAMC@chr-hansen.com, Tel: +45 45 74 76 18


Chr. Hansen is a leading, global bioscience company that develops natural ingredient solutions for the food, nutritional, pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. We develop and produce cultures, enzymes, probiotics and natural colors for a rich variety of foods, confectionery, beverages, dietary supplements and even animal feed and plant protection. Our product innovation is based on more than 30,000 microbial strains – we like to refer to them as ‘good bacteria’. Our solutions enable food manufacturers to produce more with less – while also reducing the use of chemicals and other synthetic additives – which make our products highly relevant in today’s world. We have been delivering value to our partners – and, ultimately, end consumers worldwide – for over 140 years. We are proud that more than one billion people consume products containing our natural ingredients every day. Revenue in the 2017/18 financial year was EUR 1,097 million. Chr. Hansen was founded in 1874 and is listed on Nasdaq Copenhagen.