Management Team

Whole Earth Brands Leadership Team

Michael Franklin

Interim Chief Executive Officer, Director

Michael Franklin has served as Interim Chief Executive Officer since January 1, 2023. Mr. Franklin has served as a Director of Whole Earth Brands since August 2022. Mr. Franklin is currently a Partner at Mariposa Capital LLC (“Mariposa”), a Miami-based family investment firm focused on long-term value creation across various industries, including CPG. In his role at Mariposa, Mr. Franklin actively supports operational improvements and M&A execution. Michael serves as a board member of Royal Oak Enterprises LLC and Curio Brands Holdings LLC. Prior to joining Mariposa, Mr. Franklin served as a private investor at Viking Global Investors LP. He started his career in investment banking at Centerview Partners.

University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School of Business, BS, Economics

Bernardo Fiaux

Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Fiaux joins Whole Earth Brands from The Kraft Heinz Company (Nasdaq: KHC) (“Kraft Heinz”), where he most recently served as CFO for the Meals, Condiments, and Foodservice division in North America. There, he supported the business in maintaining top-tier profitability and reducing balance sheet leverage to achieve post-merger targets. Prior to his role as division CFO, he also served as Head of North America M&A where he led two large divestiture processes at Kraft Heinz. Prior to Kraft Heinz, Mr. Fiaux was with 3G Capital, where he supported a series of deals including Tim Horton’s, Popeye’s, and the Heinz and Kraft Foods merger. 

University of Chicago Booth School of Business - MBA

Brian Litman

Chief Accounting Officer

Brian Litman has served as the Company’s Chief Accounting Officer since September 2021, and joined the Company as Corporate Controller and Treasurer in June of 2020. Prior to joining the Company, Mr. Litman spent 22 years at Tribune Media Company, a media company owning a variety of newspapers, television stations and other media assets, where he served in several roles, including SVP/Controller & Chief Accounting Officer from February 2008 to April 2020 and VP/Assistant Controller from February 2005 to February 2008.

Northern Illinois University – BS, Accountancy
Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management - MBA

Ira Schlussel

Chief Legal Officer

Ira Schlussel has served as VP, General Counsel & Secretary of Whole Earth Brands since June 2020 and as Vice President, General Counsel & Secretary of subsidiary Flavors Holding Inc. since May 2016.

Mr. Schlussel oversees corporate legal matters, including compliance, governance, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, litigation, contracts, and employee-related issues. Prior to joining Flavors Holdings, Mr. Schlussel served as SVP, General Counsel of HelloWorld (now Merkle Promotions and Loyalty), a global leader in online promotions. From 2007 to 2016, Mr. Schlussel was part of numerous strategic acquisitions and the ultimate sale and rebranding of the organization. Mr. Schlussel’s legal career spans nearly three decades, which also includes private practice in the areas of general corporate litigation, estate planning and real estate, as well as corporate counsel positions for numerous business ventures. He has proven to be a trusted business partner and dependable leader. He was named General Counsel of the Year by Crain’s Detroit in 2014. To learn more about Mr. Schlussel, please visit his LinkedIn profile.

University of Michigan – BA, Political Science, graduated cum laude
Georgetown University Law Center – Juris Doctor

Jeff Robinson

President, Flavors & Ingredients Division

Jeff Robinson joined in December 2020 as President of Whole Earth Brands Flavors & Ingredients division. Mr. Robinson began in his career with subsidiary Mafco Worldwide, LLC in 1992. Most recently, he was responsible for the licorice extract business, including the restructuring of Mafco’s global manufacturing footprint, managing licorice extract sales and improving the supply chain. Mr. Robinson served as Mafco’s CFO from 2003 to 2013. During his tenure as CFO, he was part of the successful acquisition and integration of two Chinese manufacturing operations for its licorice derivative business. Mr. Robinson left Mafco in 2014 for three years (rejoining Mafco in 2017) to work as CFO of Frutarom USA (now part of International Flavors & Fragrances - IFF) managing six acquisitions and three factory integrations. He also served as Assistant Controller for MacAndrews and Forbes Holdings and worked as an auditor for Ernst & Young. To learn more about Mr. Robinson, please visit his LinkedIn profile

Fairfield University – BS, Accounting and licensed CPA

Simone Adeshina

Vice President of Human Resources

Simone Adeshina has served as Vice President- Human Resources of Whole Earth Brands since April 2023. She began her career with subsidiary Mafco Worldwide, LLC in 2012 as Human Resources Assistant. She was promoted to several roles leading to overseeing the global HR functions where she provided strategic HR direction while building a strong culture in support of the missions and goals of the Company and the global team. In her tenure with Mafco, Ms. Adeshina played an integral part in successful completion of several key projects including workforce and succession planning as a result of restructuring of global footprint and providing compelling benefits and total rewards program that supports hiring and retention. To learn more about Ms. Adeshina, please visit her LinkedIn profile.

The Pennsylvania State University – BS, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Rutgers University – MS, Biomedical Sciences

Branded CPG Leadership Team

Rishi Daing

Vice President & Managing Director North America

Nigel Willerton

President & Chief Operating Officer North America

Rajnish Ohri

President & Chief Operating Officer of International

Armand Baudry

Vice President & Managing Director Western Europe

Mario Pascale

Vice President & Managing Director APAC

Jose Mostaza

Vice President & Managing Director Latin America

Laura Voge

Vice President of R&D and Regulatory

Flavors & Ingredients Leadership Team

Lee Collison

Senior Vice President, Chief Supply Chain Officer

Ray Chen

Senior Vice President, Asia Operations

Rich Davidson

Senior Vice President, Sales and R&D

Richard Craver

Controller and Global Finance Director