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Change at top of whisky firm

David steps down as CEO at William Grant

Stella DavidStella David, chief executive of spirits group William Grant & Sons, is stepping down at the end of February and will be succeeded by chief commercial officer, Simon Hunt.

Ms David joined William Grant & Sons in August 2009 and has overseen growth of the company’s portfolio of brands. She has decided it is now the time in her career to focus on building on her existing portfolio of non-executive directorships.

Since joining the family distiller, Ms David has overseen the acquisition of Tullamore D.E.W. Irish Whiskey and Drambuie, the Scotch whisky liqueur brand. She also overseen growth of brands such as Hendrick’s gin and The Balvenie single malt Scotch whisky.

Glenn Gordon, chairman, said: “We are all very grateful for Stella’s enormous contribution to the business in recent years.  In particular, she has brought an exceptional level of energy and drive to our business, while significantly enhancing our brands and their appeal to consumers.

“This has evidenced itself both in the company’s results and the overall progress of the business in terms of the depth of talent we are privileged to have and the amount of passion that is felt all over the company.”

Ms David said: “I am immensely proud of my time at William Grant & Sons and there is no doubt that there is a huge amount I am going to miss about the company. It has been an incredible journey, with a focus on building brands, planning for the long term, working with a talented array of people and very supportive family shareholders.  I wish the company every success for the future.”

Simon Hunt“Simon Hunt (right) has been with the company since October 2007, initially as managing director, North America. In April 2013 he was promoted to his current role.

Mr Hunt will take over the role of chief executive on 1 March and Ms David will continue in an advisory capacity until the end of May.

Mr Hunt said: “I am delighted to be given the opportunity to lead the great team at William Grant & Sons and build on the strong momentum we have been achieving with our world class, premium brands.”

Ms David already holds non-executive positions on the board of C&J Clark and HomeServe and spent seven years as a non-executive director of Nationwide Building Society.

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