International spirits group, Bacardi, has announced the appointment of Javier Ferran as its new president and CEO, in succession to Ruben Rodriguez who had been president, CEO and chairman. As planned, Rodriguez is to remain as chairman of the company.

Ferran is currently the group's regional president for Europe, Middle East and Africa and has a seat on the company's executive committee.

"Mr Ferran has a superb track record of success and a wealth of industry experience, serving as managing director of Martini & Rossi Ltd. (UK), and more recently as president of Europe, Middle East and Africa for Bacardi Ltd., a key region for the company," Rodriguez said. "The Board of Directors recognises Mr Ferran's demonstrated leadership abilities, his business acumen, and his commitment to the success of the company."

Ferran, who is expected to take up his role in the early summer, has been with the company for 17 years.

Appointing Ferran as CEO, while maintaining Rodriguez's role as chairman of the board, completes Bacardi's plan to split the two positions in an effort to advance corporate governance policies. It also fulfills requirements outlined in the company's succession planning policy, which requires CEO retirement at age 65.