When Per Månsson passed away last week after a short illness, the world lost a highly talented, loving and humorous man, and I lost a close friend and colleague.
Per Månsson was executive vice president with responsibility for Finance, IT, Investor Relations and Legal. He was taken on by Novo Nordisk in 1993 and entered Novozymes’ executive management following the demerger in 2000. Before that he was initially a senior lecturer at Umeå University, Sweden, and subsequently assistant professor at Uppsala University, Sweden. He also worked for the World Bank in Zambia and India.
When Per started in the Novo Group, he was a man that you noticed. He was committed. He saw opportunities. He understood how to realise them. And he produced epoch-making results. Consequently, he quickly rose through the ranks.
But Per was more than just a successful businessman and outstanding number cruncher. He was also a connoisseur of the human spirit and a loyal colleague who involved himself in the lives of his employees and helped them wherever he could.
In the executive management it was often Per who bound the group together, and he was able to diffuse a difficult situation with a witty remark, a perfect send-up in Calcutta English or an entertaining story from his many trips for the World Bank.
Per was also a very passionate man. Especially if he thought that the rest of us had completely missed the point and were in the process of squandering the company’s future. Then he might slam both fists on the table and shout in frustration: “It will be without me then”.
It is with the deepest sorrow that we must now learn to manage without him.
Per leaves a wife, Laila, and a 12-year-old son, Fredrik.
A memorial service for Per Månsson will take place on Tuesday, December 5 at 12.00 at the Swedish Church, Folke Bernadottes Allé 4, 2100 Copenhagen Ø.
Please send any flowers to Adelsö Church, Post box 178 92 Adelsö, Sweden, where Per will be buried in a private service on Friday, December 15 at 2 pm.