Chief executive of food and drink giant Nestle Peter Brabeck is to also become the company's chairman when the current chairman retires in April.

A statement said: "In order to maintain the necessary checks and balances, two vice chairmen of the board will be elected.

"Based on past experience, combining or separating the two offices yields equally good results."

Current Chairman Rainer Gut is due to retire at Nestle's annual shareholder meeting on April 14.