Senior Director of International Buyer Relations
In the United States, over a third of all the food we grow is lost to spoilage and wasted before we can eat it. In the developing world, more than half of all produce is lost to spoilage before it can be consumed. Apeel Sciences creates agricultural solutions inspired by and derived from nature for growers to protect their crops and increase the shelf life of harvested fresh produce. We are committed to being a technological and environmental trailblazer at the interface between the agricultural, materials science, chemistry, biotechnology, and engineering industries to eliminate food waste and reduce reliance on pesticides. Our mission is to enable widespread, positive impacts through the development of high performance pre- and post-harvest products and processes that conserve our precious natural resources and safeguard the Earth’s delicate ecological balance.
Apeel is comprised of highly talented, deeply passionate, and strongly tight-knit team members who are excited by the opportunity to challenge the status quo, are obsessed with solving problems, and truly seek to positively change how we feed the world.
Our people are core and absolutely fundamental to our company’s success and continued growth. Look around and what do you see? Team members who are working tirelessly and selflessly—not to serve themselves—but to help the team as a whole strategically, aggressively, and collectively realize a shared mission and vision. If you are ready for an opportunity to jump in, tackle challenges (and opportunities!) head-on, take ownership, and drive meaningful outcomes in a highly collaborative, communicative, and dynamic environment, we would love to connect with you!
- General management and development, accountability, and execution of sales for the company’s international markets. Own/hit targets for business growth based on profitable acquisition and renewal of customers. Design and implement measurement systems to track the organization’s level of success against its sales and marketing goals.
- Recruit, manage, and motivate the Apeel international sales team. Identify training needs for sales organization; set and review KPI’s. Foster a performance-oriented work culture.
- Serve as an active member of Apeel’s sales leadership team, with collective responsibility to maximize profitability, growth and market share of the company worldwide.
- Collaborate closely with the VP, Sales – Supplier Relations, VP, Sales - Domestic Buyer Relations and Apeel’s marketing and strategy staff.
- Work closely with Apeel’s Finance, Market Development, Strategy and Marketing teams in developing customer pricing, marketing and promotional ideas, and pull-through sales initiatives. Work with Marketing to implement marketing, public relations, and industry relations initiatives.
- Stay keenly aware of the market and competitors. Network within the produce community and develop commercial relationships with customers, brokers, trade associations and academic institutions. Communicate insights to senior Apeel management.
- Develop, implement and drive the Company’s business plan as it relates to the Company’s international customer base . Understand the customer’s business model and strategy as it evolves and will work to focus and coordinate the resources of Apeel in meeting and exceeding the customer’s requirements.
- Analyze and anticipate the direction of the customer’s business and develop and present programs, products, and promotional ideas (such as consumer education programs and merchandising) to increase sales volume, growth and profitability. Understand the fresh produce landscape and trends, reporting on the forces that shift tactical budgets and strategic direction of accounts.
- Serve as the Company’s principal working and communicating interface with the customer’s category team leaders and produce buyers. Position the advantages of Apeel’s products, capabilities and articulate the benefits and possibilities of those products. Execute successful and profitable new product launches. Develop a strong understanding of customer’s organizational structure and use this knowledge to maneuver effectively within that organization.
- Develop superb working relationships on a day-to-day basis with these customer stakeholders to build both the Company’s and the customer’s sales. Visit the customer’s stores and distribution centers periodically throughout the year, attend customer in-store events and supplier meetings, and network with other suppliers for market intelligence.
- Stay current on industry and retailer activities and trends to promote the Company in new business and the expansion of existing business, including through the development of strategic alliance partners and specific programs for target retailers.
- Develop a comprehensive knowledge of Apeel technologies and capabilities and use this knowledge to deliver innovation ideas and solutions to retailers and foodservice.
Potential Candidate Profile
- At least 10+ years of category sales and marketing experience in a medium or large size firm with operations in the produce or consumer packaged goods business with a substantial portion of that experience dealing with major retail accounts.
- Experience with conventional and organic fruits and vegetables from multiple growing areas is a plus. A deep understanding of the retail business and the supply and distribution chains from the perspective of growers, packers/shippers, and major retail customers. Experience in the produce industry is a plus.
- Minimum of 7+ years in a sales management position with the proven ability to develop a high-performing sales team and positive work culture in a fast-growing for product line or company.
- A proven track record of successfully building sales and profits in a “Best in Class” environment and developing new programs, products, packaging, promotional and merchandising ideas that are customer specific.
- Implemented effective sales processes to meet growth targets with requisite efficiency, scalability, and profitability (in a start-up or fast-growth environment a major plus).
- Demonstrated skills as a strong business-builder with excellent financial acumen. Experienced in planning, budgeting, forecasting, and financial analysis. Comfort with leveraging data and use in the selling process is mandatory.
- Successful record of developing data-driven strategic plans and building innovative plans that help a company grow and achieve progressively sustainable results.
- 3-5 years’ experience in market development and planning activities at senior level: identifying, prioritizing target segments and developing effective plans to reach/sell priority segments.
- Demonstrated success in team building, growing revenues, improving performance, enhancing systems, and transitional leadership.
- Experience in selling advanced technology with longer sales cycles. New product innovation and commercialization experience.
- Strong record of successful “team selling”, involving other company functional leaders and in a multicultural environment.
- Proven ability to collaborate and partner with senior executives both internally and externally (e.g., CEO, executive leadership team) and key stakeholders to drive market expansion efforts.
Knowledge and Skills
- Exceptional business acumen with emphasis in best-in-class sales and marketing skills. Savvy in structuring sales goals and forecasting of revenue and channel requirements.
- Strategic orientation with the ability to apply a solid grasp of business management and leadership principles, combined with a detail orientation to effectively manage day-to-day operations.
- Ability to assess customer needs and translate them to internal senior leadership team.
- Proven skills in direct marketing initiatives and relationship management with channel partners and end users. Knowledge of customer service, sales principles and concepts, and key-customer sales methods and practices; Recognize opportunities for business expansion within key-customers.
- Outstanding communications, presentation and interpersonal skills. Foster new business relationships. Demonstrated ability to effective visualize, understand, and persuasively communicate, at multiple levels, what Apeel can bring to retailers and foodservice.
- Strong project management and sales /operational rollout experience. Ability to develop clear action plans and drive processes with many interdependencies.
- Solid knowledge of produce growing, packing, and buying (terms of sales, product quality, and specs) is a plus. Broad knowledge of new packaging and other technologies focused on product quality.
- Knowledge of quality and food safety best practices and standards and related government regulations as they related to produce packing / shipping operations.
- A working understanding of data collection, aggregation and distribution methodologies and technology tools. Strong background in business process orientation. Operationally minded.
- A proven, results-oriented leader with drive, initiative, and management style that aligns with the Company’s core values and culture. Ability to drive impact while working in a collaborative and transparent environment.
- Passion for innovative technologies that resolve important problems for our world. Tech savvy - comfortable working with and learning new applications.
- A “roll-up-your-sleeves”, effective leader in a fast-moving organization. Agile enough to be strategic and hands-on enough to ensure execution of strategy and connection with customers / employees.
- Outstanding communication skills. A collaborative leadership style that demonstrates confidence, assertiveness, sound judgment, and a straightforward tenor to relationships. Able to quickly generate trust with employees and stakeholders.
- A leadership style that demonstrates confidence, assertiveness, initiative, judgment, and a straightforward tenor to interpersonal relationships. The ability to quickly develop relationships and generate trust with stakeholders. High emotional intelligence, political discernment, and sensitivity.
- Unquestionable integrity and physical/intellectual energy. A love of challenges and sense of urgency.
- A results-driven, forward-looking, market-savvy attitude and perspective. Holds self and others accountable.
- Entrepreneurial and creative. Ability to go beyond traditional approaches to deliver innovative and effective solutions. Challenge conventional wisdom and bring fresh perspectives and approaches.
Bachelor’s Degree required; Master’s Degree is a plus.
Apeel believes that the scale of our impact is determined by the teams that work with us. As such, we seek to build high-performing teams of people from various experiences and backgrounds who can collectively push our company into new realms. We seek a diverse pool of applicants and consider all qualified candidates regardless of race, ancestry, color, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, citizenship, disability, Veteran status, marital status, or any other protected status. If you have a special need or disability that requires accommodation, please let us know.
Please note that Apeel Sciences does not accept unsolicited resumes from recruiters or employment agencies. In the event of a recruiter or agency submitting a resume or candidate without a signed agreement being in place, we explicitly reserve the right to pursue and hire such candidates without any financial obligation to the recruiter or agency. Any unsolicited resumes, including those submitted directly to hiring managers, are deemed to be the property of Apeel Sciences.