Interbrew UK is looking for a marketing director to manage its flagship brand, Stella Artois, after Stewart Gilliland was promoted to managing director.
Gilliland’s appointment follows the resignation of Miles Templeman, who is leaving the company at the end of May after 16 years.
Templeman is credited with turning Stella into the UK’s leading premium lager, backed by the “reassuringly expensive” campaign, created by Lowe Lintas.
His departure follows months of uncertainty at the former Whitbread brewing business, which was bought by Interbrew for &£400m nine months ago.
Besides Stella Artois, the new marketing director will be responsible for marketing former Whitbread brands such as Boddingtons and Rolling Rock, as well as Heineken lager. Interbrew spends &£30m on advertising its brands.
Industry insiders had speculated that Interbrew would combine Whitbread and Bass Brewing, which it bought two months later, into one UK division run by former Bass senior executives.
Interbrew is currently contesting the British competition authorities’ ruling that it must sell off the entire Bass business, and it is understood to be drawing up plans to break up the business in order to retain some of the assets.
The brewer is hoping to hold on to the Bass operations in Northern Ireland and Scotland, while selling off the English and Welsh businesses.
A spokeswoman for Interbrew UK says the company expects to announce a replacement for Gilliland by the end of next month.