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Roles and Responsibilities

The responsibility for embedding sustainable practices primarily lies with the Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability (CR&S)Function. However, other functions such as Manufacturing and Technical Services (MATS); Risk, Internal Audit and Market Compliance, Human ResourcesTreasury and Corporate Communications all contribute:

Manufacturing and Technical Services (MATS)

Headed by President Stephen Driver, the function known as ‘MATS’ is responsible for Manufacturing, Innovation and Technical Services across the company globally.

The function comprises approximately 500 managers who manage a network of 65 manufacturing plants and 4 Innovation and Development Centres across ten Business Units in 24 countries.

In addition to Manufacturing and Product/Process Development, MATS takes the lead in driving Health and Safety, Quality and Food Safety, and Environmental Compliance (QEHS), always seeking constant improvement. A set of standardised Olam corporate documents articulate exactly the ‘why, what and how’ of implementing a QEHS improvement programme.

Human Resources

The vision for the Human Resources (HR) team is to create and sustain a highly engaged organisation that acts as ‘One Olam’ with an entrepreneurial culture, possessing the required capabilities for Olam to deliver on its strategy.

The 6 strategic pillars in the HR strategy all help to create a culture in which sustainable practices – commercial, social and environmental – can be embedded:

  • Create a high engagement and ownership mentality
  • Build a ‘one Company’ mindset
  • Institutionalise our unique culture
  • Secure and develop talent for current and future needs
  • Deepen existing and new capabilities
  • Build leadership capacity


A key part of Olam’s financing strategy is to diversify its borrowing across multiple sources. Funding from Development Finance Institutions (DFI) and foundations who have aligned interests in financing to stimulate emerging market economies, forms a key part of this strategy. DFI engagement and participation is also a strong testament and endorsement of the Olam way which aims to always have responsible growth at its core, particularly as funded projects are subject to regular expert audits from the institutions.

Led by Jayant Parande, the Treasury team maintains constant engagement and dialogue with several multilateral agencies across our global operations including International Finance Corporation (IFC), African Development Bank (AfDB), Dutch development bank FMO, French financial institution Proparco, and German development bank DEG.

Risk, Internal Audit and Market Compliance

Led by Executive Committee member, Jagdish Parihar, the teams are key in mapping risks across the Olam Value Chain. This process identifies the specific risks at each stage. Olam seeks to identify, measure and control the drivers of risk from upstream risks such as yield and input costs, to credit and counterparty in the supply chain and trading, downstream and non-trading exposures. For example, when an investment thesis is submitted, the Risk team cross checks that potential environmental and social impacts have been assessed.

Our Enterprise Risk Framework captures all categories of risk into a comprehensive scorecard. The scorecard maps the likelihood of key risks materialising along with their impacts and those that require mitigation actions. The findings from the scorecard are presented to senior management and the Board Risk Committee.

The Market Compliance Office (MCO) is responsible for ensuring overall regulatory compliance for our derivatives trading units. Complying with the highest business standards is Olam’s first priority.

Corporate Communications

Corp Comms, as the function is known, is responsible for ensuring that the whole of Olam understands our ethos of Growing Responsibly, and how to articulate it, so that there is a constant messaging ‘cascade’ to employees but also to external stakeholders. However, the team is clear to make sure colleagues understand that they also need to evidence our efforts with examples and case studies, as well as be transparent about our journey. Headed by Briony Mathieson, the team works very closely with the CR&S Function to help our multiple stakeholders easily understand our business and sustainability vision, goals and practices – one of the outputs being this report!

Next section: CR&S Governance