Multinational brewing giant Anheuser Busch InBev (AB InBev) has elected Michel Doukeris, president of AB InBev's North America zone, to succeed Carlos Brito as chief executive officer, effective 1 July 2021. Brito will step down after 15 years as CEO and 32 years at the company.
AB InBev board chairman Martin Barrington commented on Brito's departure: “We are grateful to Brito for his tremendous service and leadership. Among his many accomplishments, Brito was the architect who led and built AB InBev into the world’s leading beer company and a leading global consumer packaged goods company by masterfully integrating the many businesses that comprise AB InBev today.
"He has always been a role model of the company’s successful ownership culture. The board thanks Brito for his dedicated service, passion, caring and commitment to making our company dream big and delivering.”
Brito said: “I am very proud of being part of this team of 164,000 colleagues around the world that have been on our journey. It has been an honour and privilege to work with such a talented group of individuals as we built this global company based on strong values and our unwavering commitment to excellence, quality, consumers and communities. I am very excited about the future of our business under Michel’s leadership and congratulate him on the appointment as CEO of this amazing company.”
The brewer of Budweiser, Corona, Stella Artois and hundreds of other beer brands, said that its board of directors unanimously elected Doukeris as Brito's successor.
Leading next chapter of growth
AB InBev said in a statement that Doukeris is uniquely suited to accelerate the company's transformation and lead its next chapter of growth, adding that throughout his career at AB InBev, Doukeris has consistently delivered strong results while serving in key leadership roles in Brazil, China and the United States, three of the company’s largest markets.
As president of the North America zone, the U.S. business has delivered consistent topline growth and led the beer industry in innovations for the last two years, the company said. Prior to leading the North America zone, Doukeris was the company’s global chief sales officer.
Prior to that, he was president of the Asia Pacific zone where he accelerated top line, volume and EBITDA growth and implemented the ‘High End’ division in China, a transformational route-to-market initiative focused on building premium brands. He also successfully implemented the company’s first direct-to-consumer e-commerce platform.
AB InBev board chairman Martin Barrington said, “After conducting a rigorous and robust selection process, the board is delighted that our next CEO comes from our deep bench of leadership talent. Michel is the right leader to take the company into its next phase of organic growth and success.
"He has a proven track record in innovation, multi-category brand building in beer and adjacencies, consumer insight, and expanding premium brands in both emerging and developed markets. The board is excited to continue to work closely with Michel as we grow the company.”
Commenting on his appointment, Doukeris stated: “I am honored and humbled by the opportunity to lead AB InBev and to continue our company’s legacy of exceptional leadership and value creation. Throughout my career at AB InBev I have had the privilege to lead our business in different regions of the world and to work alongside the industry’s most talented and passionate colleagues every step of the way.
"I look forward to bringing a fresh perspective that builds on our consumer-first mindset and drives innovation and transformation in this next exciting stage. I congratulate Brito on his exceptional career and thank the board of directors for their confidence in me to lead the next chapter of AB InBev’s growth.”
A new leader for the North America Zone will be announced before 1 July 2021.