Lion has announced it has completed its extensive global search for a new Chief Executive Officer, with the appointment of Sam Fischer into the role.

Fischer joins Lion’s new Managing Director David Smith, in joining Lion from Diageo, where he is President Asia Pacific and Global Travel, and a member of the Global Diageo Executive Committee. Fischer hails from Adelaide and prior to Diageo he spent 15 years Colgate-Palmolive, moving from Australia to work in senior commercial roles across Europe and Asia. He is also currently a Non-Executive Director with the Burberry Group.

Lion Chairman Sir Rod Eddington said: “On behalf of Kirin and the Lion Board I am thrilled to welcome Sam home to Australia and to Lion. Sam brings 30 years of global leadership experience, deep expertise in alcohol beverages and FMCG businesses and a strong track record in driving business growth.

“Sam joins Lion at a pivotal time, as our industry continues to navigate the impacts of the pandemic and Lion delivers a new mid-term plan to return to sustainable growth. His drive for performance and proven ability to lead with purpose and conviction will be invaluable as Lion enters this next chapter.”

In announcing his appointment, Fischer said: “It’s a privilege to be joining Lion – a company with a proud 180-year history in Australia and New Zealand, incredible stable of locally loved brands and a growing craft beer business in the United States.

“I’m looking forward to connecting with Lion’s customers and partners across our markets and working with Lion’s people on this next chapter.”

Fischer will join Lion in July 2022, when current CEO Stuart Irvine will step down after nine years in the role.

Eddington said: “I’d like to thank Stuart again for his continued leadership and his commitment to ensuring a smooth mid-year transition.”

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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