Family-owned Bacardi Ltd, the world’s largest privately held spirits company, has announced that Mahesh Madhavan (pictured), a 20-year Bacardi veteran who is currently a member of the company’s global leadership team and regional president of Asia, Middle East & Africa, will succeed Michael J Dolan, who will retire as chief executive Officer, effective April 1, 2018. In the interim, Dolan will continue as chief executive, while Madhavan will transition to a new role as regional president of Europe for much of 2017. Dolan will continue to serve on the Bacardi board of directors until the 2019 annual general meeting, when he will retire from the company.
Facundo L Bacardi, chairman of the board of Bacardi, says: “For almost three years, the Board has conducted a rigorous succession planning process to ensure an orderly transition of leadership. With a proud history that dates back 155 years, it is critical to us to advance our goals as a company in a manner consistent with our culture. As a long-time Bacardi executive, Mahesh has the ideal mix of leadership skills, commercial, operational and financial expertise, and global brands experience. Importantly, he fully embraces our culture, history, and values, and he is an exemplary leader of people. We have great confidence in Mahesh and his vision to lead Bacardi well into the future, providing continuity of leadership to build on our success during Mike’s tenure and capitalize on the momentum of our brands and the tremendous global opportunity in both developed and emerging markets.”
Dolan has worked with Bacardi since 2009, when he joined the board of directors, and has demonstrated a deep understanding of both the business and unique values of Bacardi. During Dolan’s leadership as chief executive since 2014, the company has taken a disciplined approach to increase operational efficiencies, reduce costs, and re-invest in its iconic portfolio of brands.
“Our team is proud of the work we’ve done to strengthen the financial position of the company and improve the top-line through a sharp focus on enhancing the equity of our core brands. We’re delivering cost savings and reinvesting those savings in incremental advertising and promotion activities designed to captivate a new generation of consumers,” says Dolan. “As importantly, we have stabilized our leadership team and created robust development programs to build a deep bench of global talent. I have no doubt that with his long tenure, tremendous leadership qualities, and global perspective, Mahesh will continue to drive growth and brand momentum while nurturing our culture and our people. I look forward to partnering with him as he prepares to assume his new responsibilities.”
Bacardi also announced that, as part of the leadership succession plan, Paolo Perego, currently regional president of Europe, BMBV, will depart to pursue other opportunities. Alex Ouziel, a seven-year veteran of Bacardi and currently vice president & managing director of Eastern Europe, has been promoted to regional president of Asia, Middle East & Africa, based in Dubai, succeeding Madhavan. Ouziel will also join the global leadership team. Oksana Pevtsova, a 10-year veteran of the company, has been promoted to vice president & managing director of Eastern Europe, based in Moscow, replacing Ouziel.
The Bacardi brand portfolio comprises more than 200 brands and labels, including BACARDÍ® rum, GREY GOOSE® vodka, DEWAR’S® Blended Scotch whisky, BOMBAY SAPPHIRE® gin, MARTINI® vermouth and sparkling wines, CAZADORES® 100% blue agave tequila, and other leading and emerging brands. Bacardi manufactures its brands at 29 facilities and sells in more than 160 countries.