CPL appoints Raju as CEO


NAVIN Raju has been appointed the chief executive officer of the City Pharmacy Ltd Group of Companies.
Group board chairman Stan Joyce said the appointment would be effective from Jan 1, 2021.
He said CPL’s founder Sir Mahesh Patel would continue to chair the CPL Foundation and remain on the board as non-executive director.
Raju joined CPL in 2018 and took up senior roles such as leading the Hardware House Ltd business as chief executive officer and the Azurium Business Transformation Project as management office director.
He was promoted at the beginning of 2020 as the CPL Group chief operating officer.
Joyce said Raju was “no stranger to the operating nuances” of PNG.
“He has held a number of senior management roles including CEO roles at Heli Niugini and Akzo Nobel before joining CPL,” Joyce said.
“He has demonstrated in his prior roles and his time at CPL to be able to restructure an organisation, to transform strategy and achieve targets for growth in return on sales and investment.
“He has also championed driving down costs through smarter buying, a key factor in CPL’s retail operations.” Raju graduated from Auckland University with a bachelor of commerce degree and a master in business administration from the Southern Cross University.
Joyce said Sir Mahesh would continue with women’s economic empowerment programmes, PNG farmers and young start-up mentoring, and as a mentor in CPL’s training and development programme to develop PNG talent.
“We are confident that Raju possesses the skills necessary to drive CPL forward,” Joyce said.
Sir Mahesh had to return to the CEO role in 2018 after CPL suffered significant financial hardship as a result of fires at its Gerehu head office and Waigani Central store.
“The commitment and input of Sir Mahesh and his family at a time when CPL faced dire financial stress were indeed truly remarkable,” Joyce said.

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