Strategy & Transformation Manager
Nobian is a European leader in the production of essential chemicals, for industries ranging from construction and cleaning to pharmaceuticals and water treatment. Nobian faces important and interesting strategic questions on topics such as commercial effectiveness, M&A opportunities and sustainability targets. This will be the bread and butter of the strategic and action-oriented Strategy & Transformation Manager.
Chemicals player Nobian is a recent addition that stems from AkzoNobel and Nouryon. It has an integrated value chain based on salt mining and complex chemical processes with this raw material, across 7 plants in North-West Europe. Nobian produces essential chemicals for industries ranging from construction and cleaning to pharmaceuticals and water treatment. Nobian’s production processes rely on complex chemical and process engineering. The end products are critical for various industrial production processes and consumer goods.
The company, with ~1600 fte spread over seven sites in The Netherlands, Denmark and Germany (with headquarters in Amersfoort, NL), boasts a yearly revenue of ~1 billion euros. Nobian’s sites operate 24/7 and are strategically located in the heart of some of Europe’s largest manufacturing clusters. Nobian was fully separated from Nouryon in the summer of 2021 and is now owned by the Carlyle Group, a US-based private equity. This results in a unique organization: over a hundred years of history and expertise, combined with the energy of newly formed organization.
The company’s strength is in the quality of its engineers and its in-house knowledge: highly specialized and truly leading in the field. With the new PE-ownership, an exceptionally skilled and experienced leadership team was brought on board – for whom strategic questions are high on the agenda.
One of the main strategic topics is sustainability. Nobian has a crucial impact on society by making and supplying products that are central to the manufacturing industry and the economy itself. Yet, Nobian also has a high impact on energy usage in the countries where the sites are located– as well as the potential to be part of the solution, through the knowledge it has built around e.g. hydrogen storage in former salt caverns or hydrogen production through electrolysis. How can Nobian continue its crucial manufacturing and production while also ensuring a positive impact on the energy transition, and even support the manufacturing industry at large in doing so?
Shaping and executing the strategic agenda
Now that Nobian is no longer under the Nouryon umbrella, it falls upon the company’s leadership to define and execute the strategic agenda on a variety of dimensions. For example, how to secure access to high quality salt, given an increasingly complex regulatory context? Or how to successfully contribute to European ambitions for hydrogen as energy source, with Nobian’s experience in electrolysis and its salt caverns as storage? And how to structurally lower Nobian’s own environmental footprint with energy saving initiatives and cleaner energy sources? Or how to improve commercial effectiveness (e.g., utilizing digital sales channels) or operational excellence (e.g., recycle our waste streams into valuable raw materials)? Where to strategically allocate capex for growth, based on existing sites and customer demand? Lastly, interesting challenges exist on the topic of Digital. For instance, how can we utilize automation to manage our resources more effectively?
The contours of the strategic agenda have emerged in the past year, but they need to be sharpened and further explored. To do so, Nobian is looking to supplement its deep industry and technical expertise with typical consulting capabilities on structuring and rigorous execution.
Every week we spend 2-3 hours with the CEO and other members of the Nobian Leadership Team on the strategic agenda. The Strategy & Transformation Manager will join these discussions and have not only the opportunity to add tremendous value by exploring strategic possibilities for Nobian, but also have high exposure to leadership from the start.’ – Stef van Hout, Head of Strategy and Transformation at Nobian
Vacancy: Strategy & Transformation Manager
Nobian is currently building its Strategy & Transformation team. The Strategy & Transformation Manager will be the in-house strategic powerhouse, who also has a keen eye for execution. They will immediately take ownership of ~2-3 key strategic topics and work together with the business to gather data and prepare decision making. The classic strategy consulting toolkit will be invaluable in this effort: excellent structuring, prioritization, and convincing communication are key. The Strategy & Transformation Manager will work together with several stakeholders from the company (e.g., production, sales or R&D) to gather input, and work under the guidance of the Head of Strategy & Transformation (former Principal at BCG).
This role represents a solid growth opportunity for an experienced consultant with a strong background in strategy. This person will actively spearhead and deliver several high-priority projects and get to know both Nobian and its leadership well. The ideal candidate may be at consultant / associate level or at team leader / engagement manager level; their scope and responsibilities will be tailored to fit background and experience. In time, the Strategy & Transformation Manager may expect a next step within the business (on the production or commercial side), or potentially be groomed as the future Head of Strategy & Transformation. Opportunities within other portfolio companies of Carlyle are also in the realm of possibilities.
Nobian is working with Top of Minds to fill this vacancy.
To express your interest, please contact Imke Peters at firstname.lastname@example.org.