CEO of Constellation Brands, the maker of Corona Beer amongst other brews, Ron Sands is stepping down. Sands will hand the reins to the current COO and President of the company Bill Newlands next March, said the company on Wednesday.
Sands, who for over a decade, was the CEO and president at Constellation Brands, said that Newlands work has made a substantial impact on the company dating back to 2015 when he joined Constellation.
Sands added that Newlands understands what is needed to succeed in the rapidly evolving market this business is in and is the right person to lead the company moving forward.
When Newlands takes over as the CEO, Sands will take the executive chair position at Constellation, replacing Richard Sands his brother who will become the executive vice chair.
The brewer is also the owner of Case Noble tequila and SVEDKA vodka and has made several profitable decisions while Sands has been the CEO.
In 2013, Constellation acquired the U.S. beer business for Grupo Modelo, which includes the beers Modelo and Corona. Sands also expanded the businesses’ spirits and liquor portfolio and sold off international brands there were underperforming.
During the last five years, Constellation Brands stock has surged by over 255%.
More recently, the company placed a big bet on today’s cannabis industry. In August, the company spent $4 billion to increase its stake in Canopy Growth a cannabis company.
Constellation invested for the first time last year with Canopy Growth when it took a stake of 10%. The move in August upped the holding by Constellation in Canopy to just over 38%, and leaves an option on the table to purchase a position of over 50% that would give it controlling interest.
Constellation Brands made the announcement of a change in CEO on the day recreational cannabis use become legal across Canada.
Sands said at the time the company took its interest in Canopy that it could be one of the most significant moves globally for the business.
Canopy stock in 2018 is up an amazing 114% but dropped by more than 4% on Wednesday.