Molson Coors (UK) marketing director Simon Davies is to leave the business after 13 years at the end of September to set up a specialist marketing consultancy.
Davies, previously at Cadbury, has been one of the key strategists behind Project 10, the alcohol industry's response to government pressure to address irresponsible drinking and played a significant role in putting together what Molson Coors (UK)claims to be Britain's most diverse beer portfolio, with recent additions including Sol, Cobra Beer, Blue Moon and Kasteel Cru — an enviable category building prospect for Davies' successor.
Molson Coors (UK) chief executive Mark Hunter said: "Simon has made a material contribution to Molson Coors (UK) and we are sorry to be losing him. Carling, the UK's No.1 beer brand continues to grow its value, we have a healthy brand innovation programme and this year we launched the Bittersweet Partnership, which aims to make beer more appealing to women. Our business has never been in better shape and we are confident that it will continue to go from strength to strength."
Davies said: "I am very proud of the team's achievements in ensuring Molson Coors keep moving ahead of a challenging beer market with innovations, such as Carling Extra Cold and more recently the 100% British Barley programme, which has really connected beer drinkers with Carling's home-grown quality and values.
"People will say I'm crazy to be leaving at the top of my game to set up a business in one of the worst recessions in living memory, but I wouldn't be doing it if there wasn't a good reason," Hunter confirmed the company is speaking to a number of high profile candidates to replace Davies on the Molson Coors (UK) board.