Diageo North America CMO steps down

15th July, 2015 by Amy Hopkins

Diageo has appointed James Thompson as its new chief marketing and innovation officer for North America as Peter McDonough steps down from the role.

James-Thompson

James Thompson has been appointed Diageo’s new chief marketing and innovation officer for North America

McDonough, who has spent nine years at Diageo, will be replaced by Thompson, currently managing director of Global Reserve for Diageo, on 1 August.

Previously, Thompson held the roles of CMO for Diageo Asia Pacific, president of Guinness Canada, senior vice president of Priority Brands at Diageo North America and president of global marketing for the group’s vodka, rum and RTD categories.

“James brings with him a unique breadth of experience, having held a range of marketing, general and commercial management roles during his two decades within Diageo,” said Syl Saller, chief marketing officer for Diageo.

“His strength in leadership, creative rigor and proven track record in building brands ranging from Guinness to Johnnie Walker Blue Label will be a huge asset to our North America business.”

The news of McDonough’s departure comes less than a month after the announcement Diageo’s president of North America, Larry Schwartz, is set to retire at the end of the year.

The firm’s current chief financial officer Deirdre Mahlan was later appointed his successor.

Thompson will report directly to the president of Diageo North America and will also become a member of the firm’s North America executive team.

Commenting on McDonough’s departure, Saller added: “Under Peter’s leadership, Diageo has transformed the North America innovation business into a significant contributor of growth, consistently leading in annual revenue growth for new product introductions in IRI/Nielsen.

“He has also driven significant shifts in how we engage consumers to build sustainable brand franchises and world-class marketing programmes. We will miss him tremendously.”

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