James is a Director for Diageo Futures, a team on a mission to deliver growth through partnerships that create new revenue streams for Diageo, a global leader in beverage alcohol. Over the last 4 years he has led the development, launch and growth of Distill Ventures, the world’s first Spirits Accelerator, alongside our partners. In parallel he has identified and delivered a series of new business opportunities for the organisation, primarily on the global whisky portfolio with a focus on Johnnie Walker. He is a member of Diageo’s Innovation Leadership Team. James has worked across a variety of marketing and innovation roles in his 9 years at Diageo each of which focused on new business creation. These include the creation of the fast growing ‘premixed spirits’ category in Western Europe, and Head of Innovation for Russia & Eastern Europe which had a dual focus on sustaining portfolio growth alongside the creation and delivery of new to world brands.
His career started at the home of Unilever, Port Sunlight, in their Supply Chain. He moved with them to Argentina before returning to the UK in their marketing organisation in London. James is motivated by creating change that delivers value, unlocking the potential in organisations and people. Away from work he loves his sport, he is a keen hockey player but will try his hand at anything. He loves discovering new food and drink and does much of this through a love of travel and exploring new cultures.
He is married with 2 young children and had the pleasure of 8 months Shared Parental Leave with his young family in 2016.