Total selects new group CIO – and other key appointments
  • Veteran oil and gas IT executive scales the ranks to group CIO role after more than two decades at Total.
  • Credited with establishing Total’s first global offshore outsourcing.
  • Promotion places new CIO among top 20 IT leaders in Europe.
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Total selects new group CIO – and other key appointments

I-CIO editorial team – May 2015
Elevated roles for IT chiefs at Total, AIG, Lanxess, IKEA, Axel Springer, Malaysia Airlines, Carrefour, the UK government, and more.

Total has appointed oil and gas IT veteran Frédéric Gimenez as its new group CIO, director of its information systems and telecommunications group. Gimenez joined the Paris-headquartered company in 1994 and has led technology across a broad range of roles.

From 2004 to 2008, Gimenez set up and managed the SAP Competency Center for Total’s Refining and Marketing operations, following a Europe-wide rollout of the business applications package. He then moved on to lead IT in the UK for two years before returning to Paris as head of infrastructure and production, again within the Refining and Marketing business unit, in charge of data centers, telecoms, servers, storage and all associated operations. During his time in that position he also established Total’s first global offshore outsourcing contract.

That led to his appointment as deputy VP for information systems for Refining and Marketing, then VP information systems for Total’s Refining and Chemicals business – the same role held by his predecessor, Patrick Hereng. As Total’s top IT leader, Gimenez ranks among Europe’s Top 20 enterprise CIOs.
Other key appointments

Australia
Western Australia Police has made Mike Schuman CIO on a permanent basis. Schuman had been acting CIO since December 2014.
• Energy company AGL has disbanded the CIO role and appointed three new executives: executive general manager of finance and technology Brett Redman; executive general manager of organizational transformation Alistair Preston; and executive general manager of energy market operations Stephen Mikkelsen. Both Redman and Mikkelsen were already at AGL, as CFO and head of retail energy respectively, while Preston joins from the Amsterdam business of energy company AES.

France
Carrefour Group has appointed Renaud de Barbuat as CIO, replacing Hervé Thoumyre, who had held the top IT role since 2007. De Barbuat was group CIO at electronic systems company Thales until September 2013, when he founded and became president of consulting company STRADIGIS.
• François Tincelin has been hired as CIO of Business France, the government agency that supports the international development of the French economy and was formed through the merger of Ubifrance and AFII. Tincelin had been CIO at Korian since 2011. He was CIO and COO at Unicopa until 2007, when he joined Intersport as CIO.

Germany
• Publishing company Axel Springer has promoted Samir Fadlallah to CIO. Fadlallah has been with the company since 2008, most recently as project director and head of consulting and IT projects for the Pictures and World business unit.
• Specialty chemicals company Lanxess has appointed Kai Finke as its new CIO and head of group function for IT. Finke had been CIO at agricultural chemical and salt company K+S and managing director of K+S IT since September 2012. Prior to this, he was CIO and VP of supply chain management at BASF Personal Care & Nutrition. Finke spent more than 10 years at Cognis (acquired by BASF in 2010), joining as IT manager in 1999 and leaving as CIO and VP global supply chain in 2011. IT at Lanxess has been overseen by Hermann Schuster on an interim basis since former CIO Christoph Schulze-Berge left the company in August 2014.
• Klaus Vogl is the new CIO at Semikron Elektronik, a manufacturer of power modules and systems. Vogl has been CIO of car service company ATU Group for the past four and a half years.
• Michael Müller-Wünsch will become EVP technology at shipping company Otto from August 2015. Müller-Wünsch is currently CIO at wholesale company Lekkerland.

Malaysia
• Tan Kok Meng is the new CIO at Malaysia Airlines. He was previously group CIO and head of regional shared services at Malayan Banking Bhd and has previously served as program director of finance transformation at AstraZeneca in Malaysia.

Sweden
IKEA has promoted Michael Laursen to group CIO, succeeding Paolo Cinelli. Laursen had been manager of global IT for the home furnishings retailer since 2009 and was CIO at Maersk Line from 2003 to 2009.
Stockholm City has a new CIO – Ann Hellenius has replaced Anette Holm. Hellenius has spent the past year leading the Department for Development and Coordination for the city’s Education Administration.

Switzerland
Raiffeisen Switzerland has hired Rolf Olmesdahl as CIO. Olmesdahl will join the company’s management team on July 1. He is currently head of development and maintenance of IT applications at Zurich Insurance and has previously worked at UBS.

UK
• Online fashion retailer M and M Direct has appointed Fenton Farthing as CIO. Farthing joined the company in September and replaces Graham Benson, who moved to rentalcars.com as CIO in February. Farthing’s e-commerce experience includes more than four years as head of e-commerce development and QA at Shop Direct.
• The Ministry of Defence has appointed Madhu Bhabuta as its new CTO. Bhabuta has been CIO of the UK Hydrographic Office since September 2013 and will work with the MoD’s CIO Mike Stone, appointed last year, to deliver on a transformational agenda.
• Lowcosttravelgroup has selected Francesco de Marchis as group CTO. De Marchis has spent the past four years as CIO of online retailer Play.com, which was acquired by Japanese retail group Rakuten in 2011.
• Department store group House of Fraser has hired Uday Kotla as its new CIO to support the company’s global retail plans. Kotla was most recently AVP, digital and integration services at Infosys.

US
AIG has hired its first CTO, Mike Brady, who previously led IT infrastructure at healthcare company Kaiser Permanente. The appointment follows the hiring of AIG CIO Phil Fasano last year (see October 2014 Appointments), who had also been at Kaiser Permanente.
• Drugstore chain Rite Aid has appointed Steve Rempel as SVP and CIO. Rempel spent 35 years working in IT at Safeway and has been CIO, president and CEO for Balance Innovations, a provider of cash management solutions, since May 2013.
• Financial services provider TIAA-CREF has hired Rahul Merchant as EVP and CIO. Merchant was New York City's first city-wide chief information and innovation officer from 2012 to 2014 and has also served in CIO roles at Fannie Mae and Merrill Lynch.
Norwegian Cruise Line has selected Benny Lago as CIO following its merger with Prestige Cruise Holdings, where Lago was CIO.
• Commercial fleet management, transport and supply chain management company Ryder System has selected Melvin Kirk as CIO. Kirk joined the organization in 2012 as VP of maintenance, engineering and quality operations for its fleet management solutions business.
Arthur J Gallagher has selected Sean Connelly as its global CIO. Connelly joins the insurance and risk brokerage from investment and advisory company Guggenheim Partners, where he was CIO and senior managing director.
• Insurance company CUNA Mutual has appointed Tim Peterson as CIO. Peterson was previously EVP, CIO at Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, prior to which he was CIO of OptumHealth Care Solutions at OptumHealth.
• Global marketing and comms agency Edelman has selected Martin O'Reilly as global CIO and CTO. O’Reilly was previously global CIO of Burson-Marsteller and, prior to that, led infrastructure services for WPP Group. He will be based in the New York office at Edelman, which has employees in 65 cities globally.
OptumRX, a division of UnitedHealth Group, has hired Margot Sharapova as CIO. Sharapova was previously VP and CIO, Americas at AECOM, having also served as CIO at several business units at GE.
McCormick & Company, a global manufacturer of spices, herbs and flavorings, has promoted Ken Thomas to CIO. Thomas was previously VP global IT and succeeds Jerry Wolfe in the top IT role.
• Randy Miskanic has been made CIO for the US Postal Service on an acting basis. The move follows the appointment of former CIO Jim Cochrane as acting chief marketing and sales officer. Miskanic had been leading digital solutions for the Post Office.
• Paul Fipps has been promoted from SVP of global operations to CIO at sports apparel group Under Armour. Fipps joined the company in January 2014.
• Home nursing provider Amedisys has appointed Martin Howard as CIO. Howard brings 30 years’ experience in the healthcare industry, including CIO and COO roles, and was most recently director of strategy and operations at Deloitte.
• Title insurance and real estate services company Stewart Information Services has hired Brad Rable as CIO to lead its IT transformation. Rable was most recently an executive partner at Gartner and prior to that was EVP, chief growth officer and CIO at AIG’s United Guaranty Corp.
Ohio University has hired Craig Bantz as CIO and VP of its Office of IT. Bantz has spent more than 13 years at the University of Minnesota, where he was most recently associate CIO and assistant dean for the College of Biological Sciences.
PRA Group, a specialist in acquiring defaulted receivables, has made Deborah Cassidy CIO and a member of its executive management team. Cassidy was most recently SVP and business CIO for Genworth Financial.
• David Hamilton is the new CIO at Amherst College. Hamilton joined as director of web services in 2006 and has been interim CIO since late 2014.
Wisdom Tree Investments has appointed David Yates as CIO. Yates will focus on enhancing the asset manager’s business analytics capabilities. He was previously an associate principal at McKinsey & Co.
United Stationers has appointed Janet Zelenka as SVP and CIO. Zelenka has been with the office equipment supplier since 2006. Prior to that, she had been VP of IT at SBC-Ameritech (now AT&T).
Elevate Services, a legal services provider, has named Howard Phillips as CIO. Phillips joins from LeClairRyan.
First published May 2015
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