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    Rose Holdings appoints Steven Watt as new chief executive

    Steven Watt

    Confectionery manufacturer, importer and distributor Rose Holdings said its CEO Richard Kennedy will transition from the role this month.

    Steven Watt, managing director at Rose Marketing UK will become chief executive whilst Kennedy will continue as an adviser and remain on the board as Non-Executive Director.

    Rose Holdings Group includes Rose Marketing UK, an import and distribution company based in the UK, and Rose Confectionery Ltd, for Ireland and Northern Ireland.

    “As managing director and founder of Rose Marketing UK, Steven has built an outstanding business from scratch,” Kennedy said.

    “He has developed a great team and a successful culture that has delivered very strong business growth since inception almost twenty years ago. His proven track record will ensure Rose’s impressive year-on-year sales growth will continue.”

    Watt will be supported in Ireland by Neidra Lenehan as head of sales, Phelim Daly as head of operations and Fergal McNulty as finance director. Orla Mitchell also joins Rose as chairperson of the board and will bring a wealth of global strategy, marketing and business management experience which includes, amongst others, a significant time at Mars Wrigley Confectionery. 

    In July 2022, Irish private equity firm Melior Equity Partners invested in Rose to support business growth. Rose has set out an ambitious growth plan to 2027 and to achieve this it will seek to build on its position as ‘Partner of Choice’ with customers, consumers and licensees through their product portfolio as well as a clear commitment to agility and innovation.

    Rose plans to continue to disrupt categories, particularly in the core UK and Irish markets and to ensure that sustainable value is delivered to stakeholders via their in-house brands Eezy Freezzy, Goodylicious, Giant Candy Company, The Candy Castle Crew, State of Choc, and Mega Candy Company as well as their portfolio of licensed brands that, at present, include Vimto, Tango, Swizzels, SLUSH PUPPiE, The Snowman and The Snowdog, Robinsons, Chupa Chups and The Broons.

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