Major staff shake up at CBH

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CBH operations general manager David Capper at Kwinana Grain Terminal in 2015.
Camera IconCBH operations general manager David Capper at Kwinana Grain Terminal in 2015. Credit: Danella Bevis

CBH’s long-term operations general manager David Capper has announced he will leave the organisation, just days after the company launched an overhaul of its port zone and areas.

Mr Capper has worked at CBH for almost two decades, most of which was spent leading the company’s storage and handling, logistics, engineering, and shipping services.

He will leave the organisation on February 18.

Mr Capper will be replaced by CBH planning, strategy and development general manager Ben Macnamara, who started at CBH in 2014.

Mr Capper’s departure comes just days after CBH announced a major overhaul of its port zones and areas.

CBH’s four port zones — Geraldton, Kwinana, Albany and Esperance — have become five and the zone’s 12 area managers have been bumped up to 19, with a swag of new area managers appointed to lead the charge.

Kwinana Port Zone, which reeled in a record-breaking eight million tonnes of grain during the recent harvest, has been split into two zones, Kwinana South and Kwinana North.

CBH Kwinana Port Zone manager Andrew Mencshelyi and Albany Port Zone manager Greg Thornton also left CBH in recent weeks.

The reason for their departure is unknown.

Taking Mr Mencshelyi’s place is former Hatch Advisory and Management Consulting senior principal Jaco Harwig, who will manage Kwinana South, and former CBH area manager Allan Walker, who will manage Kwinana North.

In the Albany Port Zone, Mr Thornton has been replaced by former BASF Performance Chemicals WA manager Adam Wray.

On ABC radio late last month, CBH chief executive Jimmy Wilson declined to comment on why Mr Mencshelyi and Mr Thornton had “left the organisation”.

“We need to respect the fact that people leave organisations for a number of reasons — some personal, some of them as a result of transformation, some of them just because we are getting the right skills in place,” he said.

“What I can say is we have replaced them with people we have interviewed extensively and we are confident they can deliver successfully.”

Mr Wilson, who took the reins at CBH in October 2017 after leading BHP’s iron ore division, said the new managers, “brought strong network skills to the organisation” but would need to be “taught grain”, as he had been.

Mr Capper started his career with CBH in 2011, and previously worked as the operations director at PT Eastern Pearl Flour Mills in Indonesia.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Mr Capper’s main focus was “creating and returning value for growers by ensuring an efficient and cost effective supply chain from paddock to port and maximising the competition for and value of growers grain delivered to the network”.

Mr Macnamara has worked with CBH for the past 4.5 years.

He worked as the organisation’s business development management for three years, before being appointed the planning, strategy and development general manager in December 2017.

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