Chivas Brothers poaches Wm Grant marketing boss

Chivas Brothers, the global Scotch whisky business owned by Pernod Ricard, has poached William Grant & Sons group marketing director for malts Paul Godfrey to be its brand director for premium blended Scotch whisky Chivas Regal 12-year-old.

Godfrey will be responsible for the development of the Chivas Regal 12-year-old brand, running an international team of marketing and brand managers. Advertising is handled by TBWA/London.

Chivas Regal is sold in more than 200 countries. Sales grew by 12 per cent in 2004, reaching 3.3 million nine-litre cases. The brand performs extremely well in Asian markets such as China, where it is the leading imported spirit.

At William Grant & Sons, Godfrey worked closely with managing director Simon Macdonald on a review of the &£10m Glenfiddich global advertising account, which saw VCCP lose its hold on the business (MW July 8, 2004). The account was consolidated into Omnicom-owned US agency Merkley & Partners.

Howard Southern, who had been brands director of Chivas Regal 12-year-old, has moved to Pernod Ricard in Paris to become a senior category director.

A spokesman for William Grant & Sons says the company is recruiting a replacement for Godfrey.

William Grant & Sons is a family-owned business. Two years ago, group managing director Patrick Thomas and international marketing director Tim Dewey left after a board-level shake-up. Insiders say the two men had fallen out with the family. Dewey is now international brands director at SAB Miller.

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