Ballesty to leave Diageo Australia; UK innovation chief returns home

Drinks giant confirms departure of Adam Ballesty and his successor as marketing and innovation director

Adam Ballesty
Adam Ballesty

Diageo Australia has announced its African innovation director is set to take up the reins as local marketing and innovation chief following the forthcoming departure of Adam Ballesty.

In a statement, the drinks business confirmed Ballesty is leaving the organisation after more than six years, the last five as its marketing and innovation director. His next move hasn’t been confirmed but he’s expected to leave in coming months.

In his stead, Andy Oughton will return from the UK to take up the local post. Oughton has spent the last couple of years as innovation director for Africa. Prior to that, he was marketing manager for Bundaberg Rum, Smirnoff and Captain Morgan brands, and has been with the business since 2002.

Diageo Australia managing Director, David Smith noted Ballesty’s significant impact on the business during his tenure. Ballesty was ranked 16th in the 2017 edition of CMO50.

“His accomplishments are numerous, but it’s hard to trump the turnaround of our very own Bundaberg Rum,” he commented. “Adam has led a transformation of this brand that has seen it return to growth for the first time in years.

“He’s helped shape a bold transformation of our premix offerings that has driven that category back into growth and he’s built a hugely talented marketing team. I thank Adam for his stewardship, his leadership and his passion.”

Ballesty said he was delighted with his time at Diageo Australia, the team and achievements made over the past five years.

“It’s with this deep appreciation for the business that I am delighted to say we have worked together to ensure we can bring Andy home and let him drive the business forward into the next chapter,” he said. “I leave Diageo with lifelong friends, and personal and professional growth that will hold me in the best position possible into the future.”

Ballesty has not confirmed his next professional step but will work with Oughton under a transition period when he returns home later this year.

“The last couple of years in the UK leading the African innovation team have been an amazing adventure and I’ll miss working with the fantastic people and brands from the region,” Oughton said.

“I’m thrilled to be returning home and to be re-joining the Australian marketing team to continue with the significant legacy that the team and AB have created.”

 

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu  

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