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C&A strengthens female leadership with new appointments

By Simone Preuss


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C&A Europe’s new chief people & culture officer Fareen Abdullah. Image: C&A Europe

Fashion retail giant C&A has strengthened its team of female leaders with two new appointments: From 1st February 2023, Fareen Abdullah will be the new chief people & culture officer for C&A Europe and Nigyar Makhmudova will be non-executive director of the C&A AG board with immediate effect.

Abdullah joins the company from Adidas, where her most recent role was vice president, HR for Latin America. As a new member of C&A’s European management team, Abdullah’s mission will be to further improve the operational HR standards and drive the ongoing change process forward, including the organisation’s new people-centric strategy.

“Fareen Abdullah is a proven international HR leader with extensive years of experience across Europe, Asia, and Latin America. She has in-depth knowledge of the retail business and has also managed a multi-country business first-hand as a general manager,” commented Giny Boer, CEO of C&A Europe, the appointment in a press release.

Non-executive director of the C&A AG board Nigyar Makhmudova. Image: C&A

Makhmudova holds an MSc in biochemistry and a diploma in management from Nottingham Business School. She has served as a non-executive board director of the Jungunzblauer AG, a privately-owned global manufacturer of natural biodegradable food ingredients. She is also a member of the European Advisory Board of the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute of Marketing Science, as well as of the European advisory board of the Leading Executives Advancing Diversity (LEAD) Network.

“With Nigyar Makhmudova, we won a hugely experienced leader as non-executive director for the C&A AG board. She is an accomplished global CEO and transformational leader with more than 30 years of professional experience, more than 20 of those across developed and emerging markets within Mars Incorporated. In her latest executive role, Nigyar served as executive vice president and chief growth officer of Danone SA, a company with more than 100,000 employees, a presence in over 120 markets, and more than 26 billion euros in sales,” said Allan Leighton, chairman of the C&A AG board.

As of 23rd January 2023, the new C&A AG board comprises of Leighton who also chairs the nominations committee, and non-executive directors Alexander Birken, Maëlys Castella, Diane de Saint Victor and Nigyar Makhmudova. Birken also chairs the remuneration committee while Castella chairs the audit committee.

Fareen Abdullah
Nigyar Makhmudova