The list of Indians going on to head global multinationals has a new addition.

Ivan Menezes will take as the CEO of Diageo, the world’s largest spirits company, from July 1, 2013. Paul Walsh, who will step down from the Board at the September 2013 Annual General Meeting, will retire from the company on 30 June 2014.

In the last 12 months he will focus on transitioning critical partner and external relationships to Menezes. These will include those relationships essential to recent acquisitions. Menezes also played a key role in the $2.1 billion transaction with United Spirits.

Dr Franz B. Humer, Chairman of Diageo said: “Paul is an outstanding Chief Executive. He has served our business, its shareholders, employees and partners with enormous imagination and dedication over the past 13 years. I know he is justly proud of Diageo and its people and he leaves a great legacy for his successor. The Board is immensely grateful for his ambitious and thoughtful stewardship of the business and its people. The transition process which has been put in place enables Paul to contribute his knowledge and experience during Ivan’s first year as Chief Executive Officer. We are delighted to have a leader of Ivan’s talents and global experience to succeed Paul. The handover is being made at a time when the business is strong and Ivan takes on the role of CEO at an exciting stage of the company’s global development. The Board is confident that Ivan will inspire our organisation and Diageo will continue to achieve our medium-term performance objectives.”

Ivan Menezes, 54, has been the chief operating officer of Diageo plc since March 2012. In this role he oversees the commercial operations of Diageo globally. Menezes also sits on the executive committee and the Board of Directors of Diageo plc.

Prior to his appointment as COO, Menezes was President and CEO of Diageo North America for eight years. During this period he was also made Chairman, Asia Pacific from October 2008 and Chairman, Latin America & the Caribbean from July 2011.

Menezes joined Diageo in 1997 and held various senior management positions with Guinness and then Diageo until 2004 when he was appointed President of Diageo Venture Markets. Diageo Venture Markets is a division that had direct responsibility for approximately 123 countries, representing nearly 70% of the world’s population.

Prior to his career with Diageo, he worked across a variety of sales, marketing and strategy roles for Whirlpool in Europe, Booz Allen & Hamilton in North America, and Nestlé in Asia.

Ivan holds an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, a post-graduate degree from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabadand a BA Economics from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University.

He also serves as a non-executive director of Coach, Inc., in the United States.

Source: Business Standard

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