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New Leadership at Covestro’s US Operations

Samir Hifri, who joined the company in 1998 as a trainee, will succeed Haakan Jonsson as chairman and president.

January 18, 2023

2 Min Read
Covestro executives
Samir Hifri (left) will succeed Haakan Jonsson as chairman and president of Covestro LLC, effective July 1, 2023.Image courtesy of Covestro

Materials supplier Covestro announced today that Samir Hifri will take the reins as chairman and president at Covestro LLC, effective July 1, 2023. Hifri will lead the US operations of the global company, headquartered in Leverkusen, Germany, succeeding Haakan Jonsson, who will retire after 30-plus years of service with Covestro.

“I’m both humbled and grateful for the opportunity to lead and work alongside the talented US team, as we continue to advance the company’s vision of becoming fully circular,” said Hifri. “In some ways, I feel as though as my own career has come full circle, as this next chapter brings me back to Pittsburgh, where my Covestro journey first began.”

Hifri joined the company in 1998 as a commercial trainee at the US headquarters in Pittsburgh. A career spanning product management, sales and marketing, supply chain, and country management has taken him to 10 Covestro sites across six countries and three continents. Hifri currently serves a dual role as the senior vice president and managing director of Covestro Hong Kong, as well as head of the Supply Chain & Logistics Center for the Asia-Pacific region. 

Hifri graduated from Duquesne University with a bachelor’s degree in international finance. He also holds an executive degree from the prestigious INSEAD business school in France. In addition to his professional responsibilities, Hifri remains active in a number of community and academic functions, said the news release. 

“With his passion for people, deep knowledge of Covestro’s global business and strong ties to America, Samir is well suited to lead the US organization into the future,” said Thomas Toepfer, CFO and member of the Board of Management. 

“On behalf of the Board of Management, I want to extend my congratulations to Samir and also to recognize Haakan for his many contributions to Covestro," said Toepfer. "Haakan steered the US organization through one of the most challenging and transformative periods in our history, while continuing to foster a more diverse, inclusive, and innovative culture.”

Jonsson joined Covestro as a scientist in 1992, and has amassed more than 20 patents and held leadership roles in innovation, supply chain, and production operations. He assumed his current role in January 2020, quickly having to shift gears from the normal course of business to safely sustaining US operations in the face of a global pandemic. During his tenure, he also oversaw the US integration of the resins and functional materials business acquired from DSM and the launch of the Covestro Circular Economy Program at the University of Pittsburgh. “I’ve been fortunate to have led a long, fulfilling career with Covestro, which culminated in the ultimate privilege of leading the first-class team here in the US,” said Jonsson. “As my own Covestro journey comes to a close, I am confident that the US organization will continue to grow and thrive under Samir’s capable leadership.”

Covestro employs approximately 2,700 people in the United State and operates 13 sites. The US side of Covestro’s business represents around 25% of global sales.

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