New Leadership at Diageo North America

Organizational changes prepare company for "next stage of growth"

Deirdre Mahlan and Tom Looney of Diageo North America

Deirdre Mahlan and Tom Looney

NORWALK, Conn. -- "Change" is in the air for beer, wine and spirits producer Diageo as it announced several executive appointments to its leadership.

Diageo recently announced that Larry Schwartz, president of Diageo North America would retire by the end of this calendar year. Today, Diageo announced Deirdre Mahlan, currently chief financial officer, will fill the president's role. Deirdre will continue in her current role as CFO of Diageo until a replacement is found.

"Today we announced a number of organizational changes in Diageo North America, and I am delighted that we can also announce that Deirdre will be leading this change," said Diageo chief executive officer Ivan Menezes. "Deirdre has been an exceptional CFO and has the skills, together with experience of the market, to lead the next stage of growth in North America".

Tom Looney, currently president Diageo-Guinness USA, was appointed to the role of president, U.S. Open and Control States. Looney's appointment combines Open and Control States leadership into one role as the company continues to improve its commercial model. Looney's appointment follows the announcement that Mark Hubler, president Open States and National Accounts, will depart Diageo for Johnson Brothers Liquor Co. effective July 31.

With more than 25 years' experience in the alcohol-beverage industry, Looney has most recently improved performance in Diageo's U.S. beer business. Prior to his current role, Looney was chief commercial officer where he oversaw the pricing strategy, business analytics and commercial marketing functions across spirits, beer and wine for North America. Looney has also held a variety of roles, including general manager of the Northeast Control Cluster, vice president of finance for both the Control Markets and the former Northeast In Market Co.

Jeff Ivey, chief commercial officer will expand his role to include leadership of Diageo's National Accounts business, as well as Commercial Capabilities, This will both streamline work and help accelerate Diageo's performance with National Accounts, according to the company.

With more than two decades in the industry, Ivey began his career with Seagram's and has held a number of sales and commercial roles since then. He has been chief commercial officer since 2013 and leads a team that includes Route to Market strategy, Commercial Marketing, Strategy and Analytics, as well as Category Management.

Tom Day, currently senior vice president of sales for Diageo-Guinness USA, is promoted to the role of president for DGUSA. Day will also join the North America executive team.

In the two years he has been on Diageo's beer business, Day has worked arm in arm with Looney to improve relationships with distributors and improve performance in beer.

Day's appointment helps maintain consistency in leadership of DGUSA and important distributor relationships, the company said. Since he joined Diageo 10 years ago, Day has had a number of Commercial and Finance roles in the former New England cluster and as vice president of sales for the Charmer Division. Day began his career at Unilever.

Separately, Diageo announced that Claudia Schubert, president Control States is appointed to the role of general manager Continental Europe effective Sept. 1 based in Amsterdam and reporting to the president of Diageo Europe.

Except where noted, all of these appointments are effective July 1 and report to the president of Diageo North America.

Chicago-based Diageo's beverage-alcohol brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, Bulleit and Buchanan's whiskies, Smirnoff, Ciroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness.