Board moves

Menezes retires from Diageo, Crew takes over

Diageo CEO Ivan Menezes
Retiring: Ivan Menezes (pic: Terry Murden)

Diageo, the Johnnie Walker to Guinness group, has announced that Sir Ivan Menezes will retire as chief executive and leave the board on 30 June following ten years leading the company.

He will be succeeded by Debra Crew, currently chief operating officer, from 1 July.

Mr Menezes joined Diageo through the merger of Guinness and Grand Metropolitan in 1997 and has held a number of senior positions in the business. He has been an executive director of Diageo since July 2012. He was knighted for services to business and equality in the King’s 2023 New Year Honours List.

During his tenure, Diageo has grown significantly, now selling more than 200 brands in more than 180 markets and is the number one company by net sales value in Scotch whisky, vodka, gin, rum, Canadian whisky, liqueurs, and also tequila, a category in which only eight years ago the company had no substantive position. In December 2022, Guinness became the number one beer in the on-trade in Great Britain for the first time.

During the past decade, Diageo’s total shareholder returns have strongly outperformed the FTSE 100, and the company has continued its policy to increase dividends every year.

With Ms Crew’s appointment, women will make up more than 50% of Diageo’s executive committee.

Prior to being appointed chief operating officer in October 2022, she was president, Diageo North America and Global Supply, leading Diageo’s largest market to 14% organic net sales growth in fiscal 2022, following on from 20% organic net sales growth in the prior year.

She joined the Diageo board as a non-executive director in April 2019, before stepping down from the board when appointed president, Diageo North America in July 2020.

Ms Crew is a graduate of the University of Denver, earned an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, and previously served as an officer in the United States Army. She currently serves on the board of Stanley Black & Decker, having previously served on the boards of Newell Brands and Mondēlez International.

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