The just-drinks Interview
Every month, just-drinks gives a drinks executive a grilling.
28 November 2013
In the first part of just-drinks' interview with the head of Czech brewer Budejovicky Budvar, Jirí Bocek discussed the company's ownership structure and its position in the Czech beer market. Here, in part two, he tells us about his plans beyond Czech and gives us his view on the never-ending legal tussle with Anheuser-Busch InBev.
27 November 2013
Back in September, Portuguese wine producer Esporao celebrated its 40th anniversary. But, while the Alentejo-based firm is proud of its history, the company is transforming itself into a progressive operation, thanks to its CEO, Joao Roquette. just-drinks' deputy editor, James Wilmore, visited Esporao's vineyards to talk wine, revolution and jazz with the company chief.
26 November 2013
Last month, I travelled to Czech to take in a tour of Budejovicky Budvar's brewery in the south of the country. While there, I was granted an audience with group director Jirí Bocek. During our time together, we discussed the firm's ownership structure, its plans for future expansion, and that legal row.
17 October 2013
As a privately-held company, Bacardi has the luxury of only having to disclose to the wider world what it wants to. But, with a long and rich history, the spirits group is keen to talk up the provenance of its brands. Here, in the first of a two-part exclusive interview, Bacardi's president & CEO, Ed Shirley, talks about the benefits of working for a family-owned firm, the opportunities for its brands and the rise of cocktail culture.
12 September 2013
Last week, just-drinks caught up with Irish Distillers' CEO Anna Malmhake. Part one of the interview ran on Tuesday. Here, in the second and concluding part of the interview, Malmhake discusses Irish whiskey's image, Pernod's competitors in the category and the threat of alcohol legislation in Ireland.
10 September 2013
Last week, Irish Distillers held an event to showcase its EUR100m (US$132m) investment in its Midleton Distillery, near Cork. What hopes does the Pernod Ricard subsidiary have for Irish whiskey? Can it build on the category's renaissance and break out of its niche? just-drinks' deputy editor James Wilmore talks to the CEO of Irish Distillers, Anna Malmhake.
16 August 2013
Seattle's Jones Soda has been on a financial roller-coaster over the past few years. But with the group edging closer to turning a profit and costs trimmed to more manageable levels, a candid CEO Jennifer Cue tells just-drinks what went wrong, and of the new challenges facing US soft drinks firms in a changing CSD market.
30 May 2013
Earlier this week, just-drinks editor Olly Wehring visited Beijing to cover Pernod Ricard's latest Capital Market Day. While there, Olly spoke to Alexandre Ricard, the company's deputy CEO & COO, in his first interview since it was announced he would become CEO of Pernod in 2015.
21 May 2013
To coincide with this week's London International Wine Fair, just-drinks managed to secure some time yesterday (20 May) with Dan Jago, the UK and group wine director for Tesco. In the first of this two-part interview, we look at Jago's time in the wine industry, Tesco's relationship with the wine consumer in the UK, and the 'E' word.
9 April 2013
In 2011, Tim Matz took on the job as the MD of Accolade Wines' North American division. Since then, the company has bought a clutch of wine brands - many of which are now part of Matz's purview - and has lost its chief executive. Late last month, just-drinks' deputy editor, James Wilmore, sat down with Matz at ProWein to talk through the challenges the company faces, the US wine market and the positive aspects of working for a private equity group.
8 January 2013
Last year, just-drinks travelled to the US to report on Diageo's investor conference. The subject of the presentations was the company's hopes and plans for the Latin America & Caribbean region. While there, just-drinks' managing editor, Olly Wehring sat down with regional president Randy Millian, to discuss the region, as well Diageo's distribution presence, the battle with brewers and the looming shadow of Brazil.
13 December 2012
Earlier this year, Ben Cooper met the CEO of Brown-Forman, Paul Varga, in the company's heartland, the US. In the first instalment of this two-part interview, the two look at Brown-Forman's position in the drinks industry, its portfolio of spirits brands and its prospects and ambitions in the emerging markets.
12 November 2012
Last week we ran the first part of an exclusive interview with Constellation Brands' CEO Rob Sands. In this second and final part here, Sands discusses the group's spirits portfolio, its pending move to take control of Crown Imports and his hopes for Modelo's Modelo Especial beer brand.
6 November 2012
The current CEO of Constellation Brands, Rob Sands, is only the group's third boss in its 67-year history - and he's been with the firm for 26 years. Clearly, then, he'll know a things or two about the drinks industry. Here, just-drinks catches up with Sands to talk premiumisation, Pinot and partnerships.
12 July 2012
Earlier this week, we ran part one of our interview with the CEO of Remy Martin, Patrick Piana. Here, in the second and concluding part, Piana looks at the emerging markets as well as the mature markets of the US and Western Europe, and argues for value over volume in the Cognac category.
10 July 2012
Yesterday (9 July), Remy Cointreau announced that it has started discussions to buy the Bruichladdich Scotch whisky brand. As the French company looks to up its brown spirits offering, and on the first anniversary of the group's sale of its Champagne operations, we talk to Patrick Piana, the head of the company's Cognac division - and largest unit - Remy Martin.
The Wehring Interview - Societe Europeenne de Participations Industrielles Champagne CEO, Cécile Bonnefond - Part II
5 April 2012
The first part of Chris Mercer's interview with Cecile Bonnefond, CEO of Societe Europeenne de Participations Industrielles' Champagne unit, ended with the Champagne veteran holding forth on the need to change consumer attitudes to the category outside of France. In part two, it's all about international markets, a “schizophrenic” supply situation, and women in boardrooms.
The Wehring Interview - Societe Europeenne de Participations Industrielles Champagne CEO, Cécile Bonnefond - Part I
29 March 2012
As his swansong earlier this month, we sent outgoing deputy editor Chris Mercer to meet the CEO of Societe Europeenne de Participations Industrielles' Champagne unit, Cécile Bonnefond. It says 'Wehring' above, but it's 'Mercer' below.
20 January 2012
Following on from part one of my interview with Diageo's Africa president, Nick Blazquez, which ran last week, this week we give you the second part, in which Blazquez gives us an idea of Diageo's future plans for the region.
10 January 2012
Late last year, Olly Wehring visited New York with Diageo, and sat down with the company's head of Africa, Nick Blazquez, for an hour. Earlier today (10 January), Diageo completed its purchase of Meta Abo in Ethiopia. Put the two together, and welcome to part one of the first Wehring interview of 2012.