Dec 22, 2016 03:54 AM EST

Hershey Appoints Michele Buck As Succeeding CEO And President; Buck Faces Challenge For Hershey’s Chocolate Company

By Kath Bane

Hershey has been one of the leading brands of chocolate across the globe for a long time now. Hershey Company announces Michele Buck, an 11-year veteran, as the succeeding president and CEO.

The company announced that Michele Buck, the current COO, will be the next CEO and President of the Hershey's chocolate company. According to the Fortune, Buck has been a veteran chocolate maker. The announcement came after John Bilbrey, the prevailing CEO, stated that he plans to retire in 2017.

In 2005, Buck became known for her remarkable strategies when she began working with Hershey. The Krave beef jerky procurement and the barkThins brand were just two of her product development. Buck also launched the increasing core confection portfolio of the company.

After a stringent internal and external review and evaluation, the company opted to have Michele Buck as the next CEO. However, the chocolate makers from Reese and Twizzlers indicated that the "compensation arrangement" of Buck and Bilbrey is still uncertain. The two will be part of the non-executive chairman of the board, the report says.

Due to the increasing number of competitors in the same field, Hershey struggled in terms of their sales and revenue. Customers shifted to larger and more established brands which countered their rivals. Though every business experiences sales challenges and slips, Hershey observed diverse changes from 2015 to 2016.

In 2015, their sales declined from $7.42 billion to &7.39 billion and it increased by about one percent in 2016. After the Mondelez deal ebbed, the Milton Hershey Trust delayed the probable "$23 billion hostile takeover effort". This actually controls 80 percent of Hershey's shareholder votes. Now, Buck will be leading Hershey as a "stand-alone company".

The news emphasized that Michele Buck will be left with bigger challenges since she is one of the few women who is among the most powerful women list. Moreover, Hershey will have to change the guards which could happen on Michele Buck's term.

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