John Lennon, Expert-In-Residence
John Lennon is an Expert-In-Residence for The Lucas Group. John has over 25 years’ experience in the international beverage industry. He is currently President and CEO of C. Mondavi & Family—founded in 1861, is one of the most successful wine brands in America.
Recently, John served as President of Xyience, a sports nutrition producer of Xyience Xenergy, Official Energy Drink of UFC, where he implemented a series of marketing and sales initiatives that propelled Xyience to a fourfold increase in Sales Revenue, transforming the company from a Chapter 11 Bankruptcy to the fastest growing top 10 Energy Drink. Xyience, which has been feted by Beverage World on several occasions as a leading beverage producer, recently completed a successful transaction and transition of the company to a strategic beverage industry buyer in 2015.
Prior to that John served as President & CEO of Pabst Brewing Company, America’s 3rd largest brewer, where he led the company transformation to its first organic sales volume and profit growth in two decades. Recruited by the Board with a mandate to lead the company through a complex disposition process, he accomplished the mission with the closing of the company transaction in 2010.
In 2006, he launched International Beverage, USA as its first employee. InterBev USA is a subsidiary of ThaiBev PLC, a leading global producer of Spirits and Beer, with $2.6B in sales and a market cap of over $4.0B. Today the company is a growing force in the USA drinks industry. InterBev USA imports and markets a portfolio of super-premium brands including Chang Beer, Mekhong Thai Rum, and the Inver House Distillers portfolio of single malt Scotch Whiskies.
Prior to joining International Beverage, John served as President and CEO of Pyramid Breweries, a leading player at the forefront of the fast-growing U.S. craft beer category. Before that he was President and CEO of Beck’s North America, with responsibility for the USA, Canada and Caribbean. Prior to that he served as VP and General Manager of Guinness Caribbean and Latin America, where he served on the Board of Directors of several breweries and soft drink bottlers throughout the region.
He has previous experience in various senior marketing and sales roles with The Nestle Company, Mexico’s FEMSA Cerveza, Grand Metropolitan (now Diageo) and with Guinness in both the USA and Ireland.
John holds an MBA from Syracuse University and a BA from the State University of New York.