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News Alert: Ste. Michelle Names David Dearie CEO

October 27, 2020

Ste. Michelle Wine Estates president and CEO Jim Mortensen will retire November 1. He will be replaced at the head of the Washington state winemaker by industry veteran David Dearie.

Currently, Dearie is Founder and Managing Director of East Wind Consulting Pty Ltd., providing strategic, brand and financial advice to clients predominately in the wine and spirits sector. His career also includes leadership positions at Treasury Wine Estates where he served as CEO and Managing Director ANZ for Fosters Wine Group. Prior to this, he spent more than a decade in senior executive roles at Brown-Forman Corporation, including Managing Director of Brown-Forman Beverages for Western Europe and Africa, and as President and COO of Brown-Forman Wine Group.

Ste. Michelle Wine Estates saw first half revenues decline 12% to $277 million as the company battled Covid-19 and looked to reorient its business on stronger footing. Adjusted operating income fell 18% to $28 million in the first half of the year. Ste. Michelle’s shipment volume decreased by 15% to 3.3 million cases in the six-month period, with higher pricing partially offsetting lower volumes.—Daniel Marsteller

Ste. Michelle Wine EstatesLeading Brands in the U.S. (thousands of 9-liter case shipments)
Rank Brand Origin 2018 2019 Percent
1 Chateau Ste. Michelle Washington 3,281 3,275 -0.2%
2 14 Hands Washington 1,649 1,579 -4.2%
3 Columbia Crest Washington 788 735 -6.8%
4 Antinori Italy 388 376 -3.1%
5 Erath Oregon 293 344 17.1%
6 Two Vines Washington 351 294 -16.1%
7 Red Diamond Washington 248 209 -15.6%
8 Motto California 67 162 +
9 Domaine Ste. Michelle Washington 157 148 -5.7%
10 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars California 139 138 -0.9%
11 Prayers of Sinners and Saints California 74 +
12 Intrinsic Washington 67 66 -0.9%
13 Drumheller Washington 47 64 36.2%
Total Ste. Michelle Wine Estates 8,246 8,294 0.6%
1 based on unrounded dataSource: IMPACT DATABANK © 2020
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