Brown-Forman names new chief brands officer

US drinks group Brown-Forman has appointed Matias Bentel as chief brands officer, taking over from Mark McCallum.

McCallum will retire from the position of executive vice president, chief brands officer on 31 December 2019 when he will reach the mandatory retirement age for executive vice presidents.

McCallum joined Brown-Forman in 2003 as chief marketing officer. During this time, he has “advanced” the firm’s international expansion and “elevated the organisation’s brand-building capabilities”. McCallum has also provided leadership support for Brown-Forman’s work on diversity and inclusion.

“Mark has a unique blend of strategic, marketing and operational talent which has been a tremendous asset to Brown-Forman,” said Brown-Forman president and CEO Lawson Whiting.

“He has been a valued member of our executive leadership team and a steward of the growth of our company and its brands. Mark has made a positive and lasting imprint on Brown-Forman and for that we are grateful.”

Following an “extensive selection process”, Bentel will take up the chief brands officer position on 1 January 2020.

A 10-year veteran of the company, Bentel has served as senior vice president, managing director, Jack Daniel’s family of brands, since 2018.

Bentel joined Brown-Forman as marketing director, Latin America and Caribbean. He has also held senior marketing roles for the Latin America region before being promoted to vice president, chief of staff in 2014 and then vice president, general manager Mexico, in 2016.

Prior to joining Brown-Forman, Bentel served as marketing manager, Latin America and Caribbean, for Diageo from 2005 to 2007 and held a number of marketing positions with Allied Domecq between 1997 and 2005.

Whiting added: “Matias has a broad range of marketing and general management experience, and has been an active member of our company’s regional and marketing leadership teams since 2014, where he has participated in the consideration of some of the company’s most important strategic and operational topics.

“Those who have worked with him over the last decade know him to be a proven leader with a deeply analytical mind who has demonstrated that he is ready to take on the important responsibilities of chief brands officer for Brown-Forman.”

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