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Patrick Gournay is a transformational, global CEO. He has held senior executive roles with renowned consumer brands, including serving as the first, external CEO of The Body Shop International, a pioneer in the ethical, natural beauty products industry. He brings more than 20 years of CEO leadership experience in a combination of high-growth, restructuring, and turnaround environments. At Merryck & Co, he has mentored company founders, CEOs, and emerging C-suite executives in the banking, engineering, mining and pharmaceutical industries. In addition, he has helped first-time CEOs successfully prepare and navigate the IPO process.
His C-suite executive experience began with Danone International, the world leading food company, where Gournay served as Administratore Delegato of Danone Italy. He soon became CEO of Dannon USA. Under his leadership, he doubled sales and increased profitability by 10 times over six years. His executive responsibilities were then extended to Canada, Mexico, Brazil and Argentina where he increased market share in both the dairy and water businesses.
As global CEO of The Body Shop International, Gournay worked directly with the company’s high-profile founders, guiding it from a privately held business into its pre-IPO transformation. While CEO, he oversaw the company’s 2,500 franchises spanning 61 countries. Drawing from his cross-cultural, international leadership expertise, he transformed the regional, UK-centric business into a robust, international company by restructuring management, people, and processes.
In addition, Gournay served as CEO of Arc International, a $2B worldwide leader which markets tabletop glass products in more than 160 countries. During his tenure, he successfully led a major restructuring of the 170-year old, iconic French company. He effectively spearheaded new international structures and business models that generated growth opportunities and accelerated their competitive positioning in China and the Middle East.
Gournay received a master’s degree in psychology from Paris-Sorbonne University
“Too often, people feel they are supposed to jump into a new role and immediately have a new strategy. But that’s not how reality works.”
“I was skeptical at first but my eyes were opened during the retreat – an intense, difficult but deeply rewarding experience. I have taken a close look at how I lead, and now understand the power of enabling others to excel. I can’t recommend the Merryck process highly enough.”