The last members of a new management team-the result of a companywide administrative and manufacturing reorganization that began in early 2001-are apparently now in place at SSL International P.L.C.
Mike Pilkington has been selected as product supply director, with responsibility for SSL's manufacturing operations worldwide. He assumes his new position April 15.
Pilkington currently is the European manufacturing director for a cereal company. An SSL spokeswoman said he has a strong international manufacturing and supply chain background.
Stuart Heap was named managing director of SSL's Americas business. He has an extensive background in global business management, the spokeswoman said.
Heap is responsible for all SSL brands in North America, including its Regent medical glove operation. He most recently managed a global lens care business, she said.
When Pilkington takes over the helm, he will oversee a reorganized manufacturing operation.
SSL closed its glove and condom manufacturing plants in the U.S. in 2000 and moved production and equipment to Malaysia and Thailand.
In 2001, it expanded the Malaysia and Thailand facilities, closed two factories in England, built a 170,000-sq.-ft. manufacturing facility in Peterlee, England, and consolidated several other operations in the United Kingdom.
Heap takes over a strong Americas operation. The unit, like most SSL businesses, is in the midst of a brand-building effort that the company reports has been successful thus far.
Its surgical glove market share in the U.S. improved to 32 percent from 30 percent the previous year while the market share of Durex condoms in the United Kingdom has grown to 89 percent from 87 percent.
Those results were partially prompted by new products introduced in 2001 by SSL, which normally has annual sales in the $550 million range, the spokeswoman said.