Latest drinks industry interviews

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just-drinks uses its unrivalled access to the top industry executives to bring you interviews with the personalities shaping the news all year round.

just-drinks speaks to Quintessential Brands CMO

Last month, Quintessential Brands opened the doors for the first time to its The Dublin Liberties Irish whiskey distillery and visitor exper...

just-drinks speaks to Diageo CEO Ivan Menezes

Earlier this week, Diageo released its results for the second half of 2018. The group posted a 7.5% increase in sales from the six months to...

just-drinks meets Piper-Heidsieck global director

Late last year, Champagne house Piper-Heidsieck released two expressions under its prestige cuvée brand, Rare. A bottle of Rare Le Secret Hi...

Hard coffee founder details Diageo lessons

Last year, Ami-Lynn Bakshi launched one of the first alcoholic cold-brew coffee RTDs in the US, the 12.5%-abv Cafe Agave Spiked Cold Brew. B...


"Africa is Asia in 15 to 20 years from today" - just-drinks speaks to Pernod Ricard CEO Alex Ricard 19 Feb 2019

Olly Wehring

Earlier this month, Pernod Ricard released its results for the second half of 2018. The group posted a 7.8% increase in sales from the six months to the end of December, with the top-line rising by 5.6% in the last quarter. Last week, just-drinks spoke to group CEO Alex Ricard in London, following a presentation to UK media about Pernod's half-year performance.


"We've got to be a little different and break some of the moulds" - just-drinks meets Distell CEO Richard Rushton - Part II 4 Jan 2019

Olly Wehring

Late last year, just-drinks spoke to Richard Rushton, CEO of Distell, in London. In part two of our exclusive interview, Rushton tells us about the group's plans outside of Africa and how Distell aims to become a larger player internationally, while also riding the wave in markets closer to home.


"The mainstream part of our wine portfolio is incredibly important for Africa" - just-drinks meets Distell CEO Richard Rushton - Part I 3 Jan 2019

Olly Wehring

In late-November, just-drinks met up with the CEO of Distell at the IWSC awards dinner in London. As guests filed into the banqueting hall, Richard Rushton took a pre-meal grilling from editor Olly Wehring. In part one of this exclusive, two-part interview, we consider Distell's place in the drinks industry, the group's over-reliance on South Africa and its aspirations for Africa and beyond.


"The future isn't to get concerned about monolithic brands like Bacardi and Smirnoff, but to encourage and focus on the innovators" - Interview - Amber Beverage Group CEO Seymour Ferreira 30 Oct 2018

Andy Morton

Amber Beverage Group is a good example of a mid-tier alcohol company. Part of the SPI Group, the company employs around 2,000 across its production sites in the Baltics, Russia, Mexico and the UK. It also distributes global brands including its own Riga Black Balsam and Moskovskaya vodkas across the world. According to CEO Seymour Ferreira, Amber prides itself on having global reach while remaining small enough to be as agile as a start-up. Earlier this month, just-drinks sat down with Ferreira to talk about how to compete with the giants of the industry, the difficulties of finding good distributors and why cannabis and low-alcohol offer attractive growth for the future.


Free Craigellachie 51 YO, Bacardi's single malts strategy and a tough stance on age statements - Interview - Bacardi's global brand director for malts, Ian Taylor 26 Oct 2018

Lucy Britner

Today, Bacardi has released a 51-year-old single malt Scotch from its Craigellachie distillery in Speyside, Scotland - the company's oldest single malt release so far. In a rare move, Bacardi has chosen to give away the expression free of charge. In an exclusive interview with just-drinks, the company's global brand director for malts, Ian Taylor, outlines the strategy behind the decision and sheds some light on Bacardi's play in single malts.


"We've got to be part of a wider ecosystem to succeed" - Daniel Grubbs, MD of the PepsiCo Ventures Group 18 Sep 2018

Dean Best

PepsiCo is to take its Nutrition Greenhouse accelerator programme to North America after launching the initiative in Europe, where it is in its second year. Dean Best spoke to PepsiCo executive Daniel Grubbs about why the US food and drinks giant is bringing the scheme to its domestic market, what it has learnt so far and why such programmes are important strategically to one of the largest players in the sector.


Campari Group CEO Bob Kunze-Concewitz on vodka's US problem, Forty Creek's upcoming expansion and cannabis hurdles 2 Aug 2018

Andy Morton

Yesterday, Campari Group released its first-half 2018 results, with organic growth coming from all regions. just-drinks spoke to CEO Bob Kunze-Concewitz after the announcement to discuss the challenging US vodka market, a European roll-out for Canadian whisky Forty Creek and why we probably shouldn't expect Campari to dive into the cannabis category any time soon.


Diageo CEO Ivan Menezes on the future of gin, the growth of no-alcohol and the plan to kick-start vodka 26 Jul 2018

Lucy Britner

Earlier today, Diageo released its full-year 2018 results, with growth coming from all regions. just-drinks spoke to CEO Ivan Menezes after the announcement to discuss the challenging vodka market, increasing thirst for no- and low-alcohol drinks and the booming gin category. 


"The consolidation of the spirits industry is not over" - just-drinks speaks to Pernod Ricard's CEO of EMEA & LatAm, Gilles Bogaert 17 Jul 2018

Lucy Britner

Earlier this month, Pernod Ricard's former MD of finance, Gilles Bogaert, moved to head up the group's Europe, Middle East & Africa and Latin America division. just-drinks sat down with Bogaert at the company's Capital Markets Day in China to talk about the job transition, the future of M&A and how data has changed the business.


"Havana Club is a kind of rebel brand. It is important to protect that" - just-drinks meets Havana Club International CEO Christian Barré 12 Jul 2018

Andy Morton

It has been 25 years since Pernod Ricard created a joint-venture with the Cuban Government to bring the Havana Club rum brand to international markets. Last month, just-drinks visited Havana to speak to the two men who currently spearhead the JV,  Havana Club International CEO Christian Barré and Juan Gonzalez, the head of Pernod's partner, Cuba's Cuba Ron Corp. In the first of a two-part series, news & insights editor Andy Morton sat down with Barré, a former Spain and Mexico CEO for Pernod, to discuss the African rum market, the potential opportunity in the US  and why negotiating with the Cuban Government is like dealing with European supermarkets.


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