Cargotec has appointed Sami Niiranen as president of Kalmar and chief executive designate of a standalone Kalmar, assuming its demerger from Cargotec goes ahead as planned next year. He will take up the new role in May, until then Cargotec chief executive Casimir Lindholm will continue to stand in. The recruitment and appointment follows the sudden departure of Michel Van Roozendaal in August.
Sami Niiranen, 51, joins the company from Swedish company Epiroc where he is president of the Underground Rock Excavation division, having worked with the company since 2017, initially as a general manager in Finland. He began his equipment related career in 2004 when he joined Atlas Copco Finland as a key account manager. After three years in the post, he was promoted to regional business manager at the company’s Rock drill operations in Örebro Sweden.
Over the next 10 years he moved up through the ranks to become global business manager and then marketing manager. In 2014 was made general manager of Atlas Copco Ghana moving after two years in the post to a similar role with the company in his home country of Finland. In 2017 Atlas Copco split into two separate businesses - just as Cargotec is planning to do now - with the rock tool division becoming Epiroc. Niiranen remained with the rebranded business and is now its president.
In August Cargotec announced it was setting up a demerger committee to oversee the Kalmar split. It has now appointed Cargotec chairman Jaakko Eskola as chairman of the three man committee along with Teresa Kemppi-Vasama and Tapio Kolunsarka. One assumes that the new president will also join it when he takes up the job in six months time.
Speaking of his appointment Niiranen said: “I am excited to be leading Kalmar through the planned standalone listing. Kalmar is a technology forerunner in its field and performs well with a talented team and a strong portfolio of businesses. I believe that the business is in an excellent position to create further value for all of its stakeholders, and I look forward to contributing with my experience to drive profitability, operational excellence, innovation and growth within the industry.”
Jaakko Eskola added: “Sami Niiranen is an experienced industry leader with a proven track record of improving operational performance and driving growth in a variety of competitive global business landscapes. We are confident that under Mr. Niiranen’s leadership Kalmar will continue to grow and maintain the commitment to profitability and sustainability.”