Jeff Rowe named Chief Executive Officer of Syngenta Group

  • Outgoing CEO Erik Fyrwald to retire, continue as Advisor to Chairman and remain on the Board of Directors.

Basel, Switzerland, Oct 20, 2023 (10:00 am CET) - Syngenta Group’s Board of Directors has elected Jeff Rowe as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Syngenta Group, effective January 1, 2024. Rowe is currently President, Syngenta Crop Protection, Syngenta Group’s largest business unit. He was previously President, Syngenta Seeds, where he executed a successful turnaround of the Seeds business.  Erik Fyrwald, Syngenta Group CEO, will continue as CEO until the end of the year, when he will retire after seven and a half years with the company. He will continue as Advisor to the Chairman of Syngenta Group and remain on the Board of Directors.

Rowe, 50, joined Syngenta as President of Syngenta Seeds and North America in September 2016. Before his current role as head of the crop protection business, he was responsible for the successful turnaround of the Seeds business, with outstanding growth and return to profitability. He also has spearheaded Syngenta Group’s efforts into regenerative agriculture and soil health. Prior to joining Syngenta, Jeff served in several leadership roles at DuPont Pioneer over a 20-year period.

The Board of Directors appointed Rowe as the new CEO, as he is not only a proven business leader with nearly 30 years of diverse experience in the agriculture sector but also a fifth-generation farmer who has first-hand knowledge of the issues that are important to farmers today, and is passionate about driving innovation and change to make global agriculture more sustainable.

Rowe will succeed Fyrwald, 64, who joined Syngenta as CEO in June 2016. During his tenure, he oversaw the acquisition by ChemChina, the formation of the Syngenta Group, and the growth of the business from Syngenta’s $12.8 billion in 2016 to the Syngenta Group’s $ 33.4 billion in 2022. Fyrwald’s passionate advocacy has established Syngenta Group as a leading voice in agriculture for global food security, sustainability and regenerative agriculture.

“Erik has provided outstanding leadership for Syngenta Group, steering it with steady hands through global pandemic, conflicts and challenging geopolitics while substantially transforming and growing the company,” said Li Fanrong, Chairman of Syngenta Group. “We will always be grateful for his thoughtful, energetic and dynamic leadership of our Group during its transition. And it is Erik’s leadership in developing a strong team that leads naturally to our next phase. With the strong foundation established by Erik, Jeff is the right CEO to lead Syngenta Group. The Board is pleased with the world-class, orderly and planned succession process and has found in Jeff a strong leader with the business acumen, operational skills and strategic vision needed to guide Syngenta Group in this critical industry.”

“As a superb operational leader and strategist, able to deliver results through teamwork while building the business for tomorrow, Jeff has played a significant role in the growth of Syngenta Group,” said Fyrwald. “I have worked with Jeff for many years and am delighted that he will lead Syngenta Group as it continues its mission to help farmers feed the world while addressing climate change.”

Jeff Rowe

Jeff Rowe

Erik Fyrwald

Erik Fyrwald


About Syngenta Group

Syngenta Group is one of the world’s biggest agricultural technology companies, with roots going back more than 250 years. With more than 59,000 employees, operating in more than 100 countries, the company strives to transform agriculture with science-driven, technological innovations to deliver high productivity and high-quality food while fighting climate change and restore nature. Syngenta Group is working with farmers to enable Regenerative Agriculture - an outcome-based food production system that nurtures and restores soil health, protects the climate and water resources and biodiversity, and enhances farms' productivity and profitability. Syngenta Group, which is registered in Shanghai, China, and has its management headquarters in Switzerland, draws strength from its four business units:  Syngenta Crop Protection, headquartered in Switzerland; Syngenta Seeds, headquartered in the United States; ADAMA®, headquartered in Israel; and Syngenta Group China. Together, these businesses provide industry-leading ways to serve customers around the world.

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