Unilever, owner of the Lipton RTD tea brand, has announced that Jim Lawrence will step down from his position as chief financial officer at the end of the year.

He will also leave the Anglo-Dutch conglomerate board, the company said late last week.

Lawrence said that he is leaving the company to pursue "new opportunities", having seen Unilever through an important period of transition.

Lawrence will be available in the New Year to facilitate a "smooth transition" and his successor will be announced shortly, Unilever said.