Ahlstrom has named Helen Mets as the company’s new president and CEO, effective 1 January, 2023.

Ms Mets is described by Ahlstrom as an, ‘international business leader with over 30 years of experience and a track record of building successful businesses and maximising value for stakeholders.’

She has held a range of senior executive leadership roles at Avery Dennison, the family company Pon and at Royal DSM, where, as executive vice president of materials, she led the growth transformation, carve out and divestment of its Specialty Materials businesses. Since December 2021, she has also served on the Ahlstrom board of directors. 

‘Ahlstrom is a company whose values and heritage I admire,’ stated Ms Mets. ‘I’m very much looking forward to work alongside Ahlstrom’s teams to lead our growth transformation, deliver on our purpose and strengthen the company’s position as a global leader in sustainable fibre-based specialty materials.’

With the fibre-based materials company entering the next phase of growth and transformation, Ivano Sessa, chairman of the company’s board of directors, said, ‘We are now starting the next phase of Ahlstrom’s transformation and the board is excited with the nomination of Helen. Her track record of value creation in the specialty materials industry, her strong customer-focused mindset and her capabilities to drive large-scale growth and transformations through sustainable innovation make her a great fit for Ahlstrom.’

Ms Mets is to succeed current president and CEO Hans Sohlström, who said, ‘Ahlstrom has great culture, competences and further growth potential. As I now hand over to Helen, I wish her and the entire Ahlstrom team the best of success.’

Mr Sessa continued, ‘On behalf of the board, I would like to thank Hans for his energetic and inspiring leadership. During his seven years at the helm of the company, first as chairman of the board, and then for the last five years as president and CEO, Ahlstrom has more than tripled its net sales and increased fivefold its EBITDA. We wish him all the best in his future endeavours.’