Pyramid Breweries Inc. announced that John J. Lennon has been appointed as president and chief executive officer, effective in early August 2004, when Lennon will join the company.
Lennon's previous position was president and CEO of Beck's North America, a $150 million division of Interbrew, where he had responsibility for the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean. Lennon has over 20 years experience as a senior executive in marketing, sales and general management, including eight years leading and managing businesses within the branded consumer goods industry. In addition to Lennon's work with Beck's, he has held senior positions with Diageo, Guinness, FEMSA, Grand Metropolitan and Nestle.
"John is a seasoned and highly regarded brewing industry executive who brings a wealth of valuable skills to the Pyramid team. His experience is almost entirely in the Better Beer industry with companies whose beers, like Pyramid, are sold based on their high quality and unique flavors. This experience is directly relevant to the task at hand," stated George Hancock, chairman of the board. During his career, Lennon has built a successful track record of leading businesses ranging from $10 million to $300 million on three continents. "John's ability to build beer brands will be invaluable as we seek to leverage our growing Beverage and Alehouse Divisions," said Hancock.
"Pyramid has tremendous potential, and I am very excited about the company," noted Lennon. "I believe that my broad marketing and operational experience in the brewing industry makes a great fit with a strong Pyramid management team. I look forward to utilizing my capabilities and experience to help drive the long term success of the company."
Lennon is a native of New York. He earned an MBA from Syracuse University and a BA from the State University of New York. Lennon will be based at Pyramid's headquarters in Seattle, Washington.
Pyramid's independent compensation committee has approved stock awards to Lennon for up to 350,000 shares of Pyramid's common stock to be issued ratably over the next five years, half of which will be awarded based on continued service, and half of which will be awarded upon the achievement of certain performance goals. The stock awards will have one-year vesting that may accelerate in the event of a change in control of Pyramid or if Lennon's employment terminates under certain conditions.