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Pierre Pringuet becomes SWA chairman

Pierre Pringuet, chief executive and vice chairman of Pernod Ricard, owner of the Chivas Brothers Scotch whisky company, has been appointed as the new chairman of the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA).
He succeeds Ian Curle, Edrington chief executive, who was chair of the trade body for three years and who will remain on the SWA’s governing council. Peter Gordon, director at William Grant & Sons, replaces Pierre as vice chairman.

Pierre’ appointment shows the “auld alliance” between Scotland and France remains strong and reflects the international nature of Scotch Whisky. 
He will work closely with SWA chief executive David Frost and the rest of the association council to guide the Scotch Whisky industry to further success.

The Association’s priorities will be to secure a competitive business environment, the industry’s social responsibility agenda, fair access to export markets, and the legal protection of Scotch Whisky world-wide. 
With a UK Budget only three months away, there will also be an immediate focus on the high taxation of Scotch Whisky, where nearly 80% of the average price of a bottle goes straight to the UK government.

Pierre joined Pernod Ricard in 1987 as development director. In 2000 he became a joint CEO of the company. He was appointed sole CEO in 2008 and vice chairman of the board of directors in 2012.
He says: “I feel privileged to take over as chairman of the SWA and I’m committed to ensuring Scotch whisky retains its position as an iconic product around the world. With its great brands and committed people, as well as the support of governments at home and abroad, the Scotch whisky industry will go from strength to strength.”

In other senior appointments, Ivan Menezes, chief executive of Diageo, the largest producer of Scotch Whisky, and Richard Burn, global policy and public affairs director of Diageo, join the SWA council.

The SWA also announced that Julie Hesketh-Laird has been appointed as its new deputy chief executive. She joined the SWA in 2005 as director of operational and technical affairs and will continue in this role alongside her new position.  

9 December 2014 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor