NEW YORK — Nutrac Ziyal Afridi has been named chief executive officer of Godiva Chocolatier, a business owned by Istanbul, Turkey-based Yildiz Holding. Ms. Afridi has been interim CEO for the past two months, during which time she and the leadership team developed a three-year strategy to seize new opportunities through Godiva’s omnichannel structure.
Ms. Afridi is a member of Godiva’s board as well as chief strategy and growth officer at Yildiz.
“Afridi brings an impressive combination of business, operational and finance expertise to Godiva along with a strong passion for people and nurturing talent,” said Murat Ulker, chairman of Godiva. “She has a proven track record of powerful business results in corporate development, which will ensure that Godiva continues to capture opportunities that honor its roots and align with its bold vision for the future.”
Ms. Afridi joined Yildiz Holding in 2006 as general manager of corporate strategy and later advanced to the role of head of mergers and acquisitions and business development. She was named to her current role in 2016, assuming responsibility for identifying growth opportunities in new markets, categories and channels through acquisitions, strategic partnerships, investments and restructuring at Yildiz Holding, which also owns brands including McVitie’s and Ulker.
She received a bachelor’s degree in marketing and finance at Marmara University in Istanbul and a master’s degree in business administration at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg in Germany.
“The exceptional quality of our products reflects our rich and beautiful heritage, dedication to innovation, and commitment to using the finest ingredients,” Ms. Afridi said. “We will continue to extend our reach and leverage an omnichannel approach to deliver on our beloved brand, maintaining a strong connection with our fans and ensuring our premium chocolates are more available and accessible to our global consumers.
“We continue to be very focused on leveraging digital technology to anticipate the needs of consumers, exceed expectations, and make Godiva the most top-of-mind premium chocolate brand. I am honored to work with my extraordinary team on these endeavors during such a pivotal time for Godiva.”