Diageo CEO Ivan Menezes to retire
Sir Ivan Menezes will retire as CEO of Diageo in June 2023 and will be replaced by the firm’s current chief operating officer Debra Crew.
Menezes will retire on 31 June 2023 after 10 years leading the company as CEO.
He joined Diageo in 1997 following the merger of Guinness and Grand Metropolitan, and has since held roles including chief operating officer; president, Diageo North America; chairman, Diageo Asia Pacific; and chairman, Diageo Latin America and Caribbean.
Menezes said: “It has been an enormous honour leading Diageo over the past decade. I am extremely proud of what we have achieved during that time, and I would like to thank my 28,000 talented colleagues around the world for all of their hard work, creativity and passion.
“I would also like to thank the board for their encouragement, challenge and support over the years.
“I am delighted to be handing over the reins to Debra. In the time that we have worked together, I have been consistently impressed with her passion for growth and for building high performing teams.
“I am confident that under Debra’s leadership, and with our extraordinary portfolio of brands and culture, Diageo will go on to deliver our long-term performance ambition.”
Diageo credited Menezes for Diageo’s growth during his tenure, with the firm currently selling more than 200 brands in 180-plus markets, and holding the position of the number one company by net sales value in Scotch whisky, vodka, gin, rum, Canadian whisky, liqueurs, and Tequila, according to IWSR Drinks Market Analysis data.
In January this year, Menezes received a knighthood for services to business and to equality in the king’s 2023 New Year Honours List.
Crew will take over as Diageo’s new CEO from 1 July 2023.
Crew has been president, Diageo North America and global supply since July 2020, and is said to have led Diageo’s ‘largest market’ to 14% organic net sales growth in fiscal 2022, following on from 20% organic net sales growth in the year prior.
She originally joined the Diageo board as a non-executive director in April 2019.
She said: “I am delighted to be appointed chief executive officer of Diageo. Ivan leaves Diageo in a very strong position for future growth and I look forward to working with our teams around the world to capture the opportunities ahead.
“I am focused on continuing Diageo’s extraordinary track record of building world-leading brands and enhancing our reputation as one of the most responsible businesses in what I believe to be the most exciting consumer products category. It is an incredible privilege to be leading Diageo through the next phase of its development.”
In January this year, Diageo agreed to acquire Philippine rum brand Don Papa for an initial €260 million (US$281.5m).
Next phase of growth
Javier Ferrán, chairman, Diageo, added: “The board is enormously grateful for Ivan’s contribution over the past decade. Under his stewardship, Diageo has consistently delivered a truly impressive performance to become one of the most respected businesses in the world.
“Ivan has transformed Diageo’s global footprint, brand portfolio and strategic focus, positioning our business as a clear leader in premium drinks.
“At the same time as delivering consistent shareholder returns, Ivan has nurtured a diverse and talented global workforce and made significant progress on the most material sustainability issues facing our business. Ivan leaves Diageo extremely well positioned for future growth, and we thank him again for everything he has helped us to achieve.
“The board has diligently planned for Ivan’s successor, and we are delighted to have appointed a leader of Debra’s calibre to the role. Debra has been a highly valued member of Diageo’s leadership team in recent years with an impressive track record of delivery both at Diageo and across other global consumer goods companies.
“She has deep consumer industry expertise as well as proven strategic capabilities, strong operational performance and a clear ability to build and lead teams. I have no doubt that Diageo is in the right hands for the next phase of its growth.”