After being introduced to the London-based Avent feeding products in early 1992, Ms. Christie founded Avent America Inc., and spent the subsequent 14 years growing the business into a mainstream brand within the U.S. and Canadian Feeding Sectors. Avent’s main competitors were very large and well-established companies including Playtex, Evenflo and Gerber. Avent America launched into this competitive category with products that had highly defined benefits, new marketing messages and a price point triple that of the market leader. As CEO, Ms. Christie led an approach to the industry that was a clear departure from the existing plans of the competition. This resulted in a full-scale change to the infant feeding category which doubled the market’s value during a time where birth rates were flat.
In 1999, Ms. Christie became an equity partner in the Global Avent business, Cannon Avent Group, and continued to lead the North American subsidiary while providing strategic support to the rest of the organization.
In early 2005, she helped lead the sale of the Global Avent business to Charterhouse Capital Partners Ltd., a Private Equity firm in the United Kingdom. The sale was completed in June of 2005 and she was appointed CEO of the new enterprise in July.
As CEO of Avent Ltd., which was based in London, she implemented many cultural and structural changes to the organization, preparing both management and operational processes for an eventual trade sale. Within 14 months, Ms. Christie led the business through the sale process to Royal Philips of Holland, including due diligence, anti-trust clearance and completion. She retired in September of 2006.
Ms. Christie, a graduate of the University of Colorado with a B.S. in Journalism, now divides her time between non-profit and commercial work. She angel invests in small start-ups and provides advisory support to them. She principally owns and is Chairman of a local Software development company, SureTint Technologies LLC which develops and markets software solutions to the Health and Beauty Industry. She is Co-Founder of the Foundation for Scientific Advancement, a non-profit based in Sierra Vista, Arizona. She is also involved in political activities focused on protecting free markets, lowering taxes and reducing Government involvement in commercial enterprise.