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News Alert: Treasury Wine CEO Michael Clarke To Retire

October 21, 2019

Treasury Wine Estates CEO Michael Clarke has announced that he will retire during the company’s fiscal first quarter of 2021, which ends next September. Clarke, who intends to return to the U.K. to spend more time with his family, will be replaced by Tim Ford, currently Treasury’s COO.

Clarke has agreed to act in the capacity of advisor to the company for up to an additional one-year period, “to provide strategic support across key initiatives including potential merger and acquisition opportunities,” Treasury said.

Ford, who joined Treasury in 2011, will step into the CEO role upon Clarke’s retirement. Ford has been COO since January, and prior to that was deputy COO and ran Treasury’s Asia, Europe and Australia/New Zealand region.

Treasury chairman Paul Rayner credited Clarke with driving “extraordinary transformation and outstanding financial returns” at the company, leaving it “very well placed to continue delivering sustainable, margin accretive growth well into the future.”

Clarke’s six-year tenure has been marked by a turnaround for Treasury both globally and in the U.S., with the company’s Asia business making strides and the rise of its 19 Crimes label significantly boosting its fortunes stateside. Treasury saw sales climb 12% to A$2.8 billion ($1.9b) in its fiscal year through June on a constant currency basis, as its $10 and above business increased by 27%. Wines retailing at $10 and up now account for nearly 70% of net sales for Treasury.

The announcement of Clarke’s plans to retire come following other recent changes in the company’s leadership. In a surprise move revealed in August, Treasury named company veteran Angus McPherson as president of its Americas region and global sales, and appointed Angus Lilley as chief marketing officer.—Daniel Marsteller

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