John Hall, Goose Island CEO, Stepping Down

There are changes afoot in the 312.

Goose Island Beer Company founder John Hall announced today that he will step down as CEO and join Anheuser-Busch InBev executives Luiz Edmond and Paul Chibe on a new “craft advisory board.”

Taking over as Goose Island CEO and president – effective January 1st, 2013 – is long-time Anheuser-Busch executive Andrew Goeler. Goeler most recently served as AB’s vice president of import, craft and specialty. Also stepping aside is Goose Island COO Tony Bowker. He will also join Hall on the craft advisory board.

Today’s news comes on the heels of an announcement in late August that AB would begin distributing the Goose Island brand nationally. Goose Island is currently on pace to produce approximately 230,000 barrels in 2012, up from 150,000 in 2011.

Below is an official statement from AB-InBev North American president Luiz Edmond and U.S. VP of marketing Paul Chibe:

Our company’s role in the high-end beer segment is growing and enabling us to reach a new and growing consumer base that has wide-ranging beer tastes and interests.

To help guide this growth, we are proud to announce the establishment of the Anheuser-Busch Craft Advisory Board, with John Hall, founder and president of Goose Island, and Tony Bowker, Goose Island chief operating officer, as its founding members. John Guerra, vice president of North America finance for AB InBev, also will sit on the board, along with both of us.

As John and Tony assume these new roles, they have announced they will move out of their positions at Goose Island. John and Tony have been a team for years, working from the small beginnings of Goose Island to launch an unknown, but well-crafted beer. Seen as trailblazers in the craft beer industry, John, Tony and the Goose Island team have won legions of fans with their distinctive beers, and the admiration and respect of many in the industry. They are at the center of the Goose Island story, and these brands will carry their mark forever. The Goose Island team is well-prepared to carry on Goose Island’s mission and long-standing tradition of fine-crafted beers.

We will continue to benefit from John’s advice on the brands, as he shares his passion for innovative, creative beer styles. Tony will continue to advise us on the business aspects of Goose Island, tapping his wealth of experience with the operation. We are grateful to have their continuing imprint on Goose Island.

Stepping into a new role at Goose Island will be Andy Goeler, who has served as vice president of Import, Craft and Specialty for the past five years at Anheuser-Busch. Andy becomes president and CEO of Goose Island reporting to Paul, effective Jan. 1, 2013.

Andy is a seasoned veteran with 30 years in the beer business at Anheuser-Busch, leading brands small and large and with broad experience in sales. Andy has been working with the Goose Island team for the past year to help expand the brands, satisfying the demands for Chicago’s favorite beer among beer drinkers in the Midwest and Northeast. Now, he will take on further expansion of the brand nationally, growing the brands the right way.

Andy has led the growth of Shock Top from its infancy, while taking established global brands, such as Stella Artois and Beck’s, and bringing them to new levels in the United States, carefully maintaining a consistent, quality brand position. Before the Goose Island partnership in 2011, Andy served on the board of the Craft Brew Alliance, owner of Kona Brewing Company, Redhook Brewery and Widmer Brothers Brewing, giving him great insights into the craft beer segment. Andy holds two masters’ degrees, one in marketing from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Rutherford, N.J., and one in international business from Webster University in St. Louis. He also completed the advanced marketing program at Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.

Replacing Andy as Anheuser-Busch vice president of Import, Craft and Specialty will be Adam Oakley, reporting to Paul, also effective Jan. 1.

Adam most recently served as director of Mission 6 brands. He joined Anheuser-Busch in the United States in 2010 from the UK team of AB InBev, where he led the resurgence of the Stella Artois brand. Adam managed a broad portfolio of brands and a team of marketers in Western Europe. He brings creative brand-building expertise and extensive brand management experience, having held positions at Diageo, Colgate-Palmolive and News International Newspapers. Adam holds a post-graduate marketing diploma from Bristol Polytechnic and a degree in mechanical engineering from Leeds University.

We are pleased to use the great talents and knowledge of all these colleagues for the further growth of our beers. Please join us in congratulating and supporting John, Tony, Andy and Adam as they move into their new roles.

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