Ivan Menezes following Walsh’s path to the top

Kasmira Jefford
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IVAN MENEZES’ journey to top of the world’s largest drinks company mirrors that of the firm’s chief executive Paul Walsh.

Walsh became chief operating officer at the start of 2000 with the stated aim of taking over as chief executive from John McGrath. By September that year he had moved into the top role.

That journey looks set to be repeated when Menezes, who has been president of Diageo’s biggest region Latin America for eight years, becomes chief operating officer today.

Menezes, 52, a naturalised American born in India, joined Guinness in 1997 in the same year it merged with Grand Metropolitan to form Diageo.

Before joining Guinness he held senior marketing positions with Whirlpool Europe in Milan and was a principal with management consultancy firm Booz Allen Hamilton in Chicago and London.

He became president of Diageo’s venture markets in 2000 and was made chief operating officer of North America in 2002.