Head of Advocacy

A competitive remuneration package will be offered
31 Jan 2014
24 Feb 2014
Full Time
Contract Type

AB Sugar – Head of Advocacy                                 

Based in Peterborough

AB Sugar is a wholly owned subsidiary of Associated British Foods headquartered in Peterborough, with operations in Europe, Africa and China. Activities cover sugar production and refinement (from cane and beet), bioethanol, and renewable fuels. The company employs over 42,000 staff, across countries of varying economic development.

AB Sugar operates in a regulated sector that is under increasing scrutiny from a growing range of influential stakeholders. Issues and risks are more complex and multifaceted, and regulatory and political intervention will only increase. In this environment it is crucial to ensure your story is heard and understood and in the area of third world development AB Sugar has a very strong story to tell (supporting 40,000 farmers and contributing to education and infrastructure in local communities).

A new position, Head of Advocacy, has therefore been created which will be based in Peterborough, and report to the Strategy & Business Development Director (board member). It is a hybrid role combining advocacy, issues management, public affairs, CSR, and, campaigning, along with some active media engagement.

Key components of the role will include:

  • Horizon scanning and identifying issues (regulatory, political and societal) which might negatively affect the business.
  • Defining a campaign of action, targeting internal and external stakeholders, to respond to these issues proactively (to get on the front foot).
  • To influence senior management on an executive level, informing them of advocacy issues, and influencing wider business strategies to mitigate and avoid political issues.
  • To co-ordinate advocacy efforts and encourage greater cohesion of activity amongst in-country (Africa and China) advocacy teams and promote the exchange of best practice.

Required experience/skills:

  • At least 10 years public affairs/policy or broader corporate affairs experience.
  • Experience of advocacy and public affairs in an industry facing similar issues to AB Sugar (nutrition, global development and sustainability, and international tax and trade).
  • A comprehensive understanding of the UK and EU political systems, public policy, and processes, and how to influence them.
  • A track record in delivering business value through the design and execution of successful public policy and advocacy campaigns.
  • Strong networking skills, to build internal consensus behind advocacy efforts.
  • Proven ability to assess both the commercial and reputational impact of policy and regulation.
  • An understanding of and record in campaigning, from conception to execution.
  • Proven skills at leading a communications team, and developing its capability.

Please send your application and CV to Christopher Dale, chrisd@watsonhelsby.co.uk