Constellation Brands chairman Rob Sands will step down from his role heading the board.
Sands, formerly chief executive of the US drinks major, will continue as a member of the board but will not stand for re-election as chair.
In 2019, Sands moved from CEO to chairman as Bill Newlands came in to head the company. He held the role of chief executive for the Corona and Modelo owner for twelve years since 2007.
Sands described his time as CEO and chair of Constellation as a “distinct privilege” and that the company saw “tremendous success” in those years.
He added: “Given the continued strong performance of our business and following Constellation’s recent transition from a dual-class to a single-class common stock structure, I believe the time is right to transition leadership of our board. I look forward to working with our new board chair and my fellow Constellation board members as we look to further build on the company’s legacy of success.”
Now Constellation president and chief executive Newlands said: “On behalf of my fellow Constellation board members, I want to thank Rob for his leadership as board chair and during his more than three decades with the company.
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“We look forward to Rob’s continued contributions as a board member as we chart the next phase of profitable growth for our company in a rapidly evolving and dynamic marketplace.”
Analysts from AllianceBernstein wrote that Constellation’s success during Sands’ tenure has been “meteoric” but that his legacy “is partially offset by capital allocation mistakes”.
Bernstein analysts added: “While part of this growth is due to favourable exposure to structural industry tailwinds like Hispanic population growth and premiumisation, there is no denying Constellation’s best-in-class marketing capabilities and patient brand scaling as key factors behind the company’s success.”
In the drinks group’s opening quarter results for its fiscal 2023, released last week, Constellation revealed its plans to bolster its beer portfolio with new pack sizes and different price points.
Group-wide net sales in the first quarter rose 6% to $2.52bn. Operating income fell 6% to $765m but increased 4% on a comparable basis.
Constellation booked a 65% drop in net income to $136m linked to its investment in the cannabis business Canopy Growth. On a comparable basis, the company’s net income grew 6% to $535m.