UK – William Grant & Sons Ltd, an independent, family-owned Scottish company that distills Scotch whisky and other selected categories of spirits, has tapped Heineken executive, Søren Hagh, as the new CEO. 

According to a statement from the company which is the largest of the handful of Scotch whisky distillers remaining in family ownership, Soren Hagh will take over CEO roles from  chairman Glenn Gordon.

Hagh is the current Heineken president in the European region, a position he has held since his appointment in June 2020.

Before his entry at Heineken more than a decade ago, he worked with L’Oreal in both marketing and in-market distribution management roles, as well as in marketing for Lego.

 “There is no doubt that Søren will provide strong leadership for the company, as he brings a tremendous wealth of relevant experience to the business from his many years working in the drinks sector,” a spokesperson for William Grant & Sons said

The appointment follows William Grant’s acquisition of the UK gin and vodka maker Silent Pool Distillers.

The acquisition will enable  the maker of Glenfiddich premium whiskey to expand the presence of Silent Pool’s ‘handcrafted spirit’ in Europe, North America, and Asia-Pacific. Silent Pool’s product portfolio includes Wry Vodka and its 43% abv namesake gin.

Quarter 3 2023 Report

Meanwhile, the Scottish distillery company reported a 33.8% increase in profit after tax and a 21.7% turnover increase year on year for 2022.

The figures bring the profit levels back in line with those of 2019, before the impact of the global pandemic and despite global supply issues.

A spokesperson for William Grant said: “While global crises, including supply issues and inflation, posed significant challenges in 2022, we are proud that performance is now just ahead of pre-Covid levels, and believe that the business is well positioned for consistent growth in the long term, in partnership with our customers.”