The new chairman at Chivas Brothers has started his new job. As announced in April last year, Christian Porta took up his official position as chairman and CEO at Chivas on 1 January 2004. Porta succeeds Georges Nectoux, who retired from the post in December 2003 after 33 years with Pernod Ricard.

In a statement, Porta said: "My priority is to continue building on the dynamic strategy developed over the two years since Chivas Brothers was formed and reinforce our position as the leader in Scotch whisky."

Until late-2003, Porta was chairman and CEO of Orlando Wyndham, a company similar in size and structure to Chivas Brothers.  Both companies cover the full operational cycle from production through to the international marketing of some of the world's most high-profile brands. They also share the benefits of Pernod Ricard's international distribution network, distinctive family character and decentralised organisation.

At Orlando Wyndham, Porta was responsible for the group's spirits marketing activity (particularly whisky) in Australia and New Zealand, as well as the international growth and development of the Jacob's Creek and Wyndham Estate brands.

Porta was also managing director of the former Campbell Distillers for two years in 1998 and 1999. He first joined Pernod Ricard ten years earlier as an Internal Auditor and was then promoted to Head of Financial Services.

He moved on to become Finance and Administrative Director of Pernod in France, before taking up the role with Campbell Distillers.