Molson Coors today said it has formed a new, centralized commercial function within its Americas business unit that will be led by Michelle St. Jacques, who will step into a new role as chief commercial officer.
The new function, which unites sales, marketing, innovation, digital capabilities and the company’s non-alcohol and liquor portfolios in the Americas, is designed to enhance focus and prioritization, allow the company to more quickly scale brands and capabilities, and provide more commercial support for Molson Coors’ portfolio of non-alc and spirits brands.
“In 2022 we achieved top- and bottom-line growth for the first time in a long time, and our goal is to do so consistently year after year,” said Gavin Hattersley, president and CEO of Molson Coors. “We’re building on what we accomplished over the past three years, unlocking the next phase of growth for our business through greater collaboration, faster decision making, and stronger commercial support for our total portfolio.”
The move is effective March 1.
St. Jacques, who has served as Molson Coors’ chief marketing officer since 2019, will oversee all commercial activity and capabilities across the Americas, including the U.S., Canada and Latin America.
The move comes after she’s spent the last four years leading the effort to modernize the company’s core brands and redefine its marketing vision. Under St. Jacques’ tenure, the company strengthened core brands like Coors Light, Miller Lite and Molson Canadian and accelerated its portfolio of above-premium brands with innovations like Topo Chico Hard Seltzer and Simply Spiked Lemonade.
“Since joining our company, Michelle has built a track record of building brands and attacking white spaces with a consumer-first mindset to effectively drive our business forward,” Hattersley said. “In doing so, she not only demonstrated a deep understanding of the total business, she also earned the confidence of distributors and retailers alike. I am very happy that she will be taking on this new role as she helps drive our Americas business to new heights.”
The Canadian-born St. Jacques, who has also held leadership roles at Kraft Heinz and sales and marketing roles at Unilever and SC Johnson, said the move positions Molson Coors to transform its commercial approach and accelerate its growth across the U.S., Canada and Latin America.
Under the new structure, she said, “I see a huge opportunity to go even further, scaling our brands, innovation, and digital capabilities faster across the region and accelerating our ambitions as a beverage company.”
St. Jacques has selected Sofia Colucci as her successor as Molson Coors’ new chief marketing officer.
Colucci, who joined the company in 2017 and most recently served as its global vice president for the Miller family of brands and economy portfolio, “has earned a reputation for creative excellence,” St. Jacques said, pointing to the resurgence of Miller Lite, which is growing total category share in the U.S.
Colucci “excels in her ability to balance creativity with brand building to drive growth, which is evident in the launch of the 'Tastes Like Miller Time' global creative platform, culturally relevant brand acts, and the recent success of our first Super Bowl ad in over 30 years,” St. Jacques said.
As part of the restructuring, Molson Coors’ president of emerging growth, Pete Marino, will leave the company, effective April 30.
“Pete and his team turned a series of firsts for our business into emerging spaces in our portfolio, and now into scale plays in our industry. We would not be in a position to scale our emerging growth business if it were not for their work,” Hattersley said. “Personally, I’ve known Pete since pretty much the day I moved to the United States. He’s incredibly bright with a big heart and quick wit, and I look forward to following his future success.”
Marino said folding the company’s growing liquor and non-alc business into the new commercial function “will take our great start in emerging growth to the next level” by helping provide additional commercial support “for even faster growth as they move to scale.”
Hattersley said the objective of the restructuring is not to reduce headcount, save money or reflect a change in the company’s strategy. Instead, he said, it prepares the company for its next phase as it moves toward sustainable, long-term growth.
“Just as the strength of our business has evolved, so too must the shape our of business,” he said. “We are in a better position than we were in 2019, and we need to think differently about what we are set up to accomplish in the years ahead. Our focus must be on taking the next steps on that path to continued progress and future prosperity.”