Lion Group has announced Shaun Belongie as the Chief Executive Officer of New Belgium, the company’s North American craft beer and fine wine business.
Following the departure of former CEO Steve Fechheimer, Lion conducted an extensive search and interview process, including a range of both internal and external candidates.
Lion Group CEO Sam Fischer said, “The United States is a strategically important market for the Lion Group, and we are delighted to welcome Shaun as the next CEO of New Belgium.
“Shaun’s breadth of experience, innovative mindset, commercial acumen and great love of the New Belgium culture and co-workers make Shaun an excellent fit to lead the team. I also want to thank and acknowledge Danielle McLarnon for her exceptional leadership as Interim CEO, and she will continue to play a crucial role as New Belgium’s Chief Financial Officer.”
Belongie has five years of experience at New Belgium as Chief Marketing Officer and 20 years in consumer-packaged goods. He will lead the business into its next chapter as a leader in the beer industry while continuing to strengthen its human-powered business practices.
In Belongie’s role as Chief Marketing Officer, he successfully built Voodoo Ranger into one of the hottest brands in beer, with sales tripling from 3 million to 9 million cases over a three-year period while also launching Juice Force in 2022. Overseeing both the New Belgium and Bell’s portfolios since they joined forces in 2022, he led the integration of the Bell’s marketing team and developed the “Never Trend” brand platform for Bell’s Two Hearted IPA, driving renewed growth momentum for the brand.
“New Belgium Brewing is a special place, powered by the best people in the business,” said Belongie.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled to have Shaun Belongie at the helm,” said New Belgium Co-Founder Kim Jordan. “Throughout his career, Shaun has demonstrated the benefits of doing business intentionally, which is what New Belgium has been about since the beginning. Our coworkers, communities, and distributors are in great hands.”
“I am deeply humbled to have the opportunity to work every day alongside these incredible coworkers. I want to thank Lion Group CEO Sam Fischer for his confidence in me to help guide New Belgium into its next chapter and Kim Jordan for her inspiration in rethinking what a business can be.”
Belongie will take the helm of the business that has experienced growth over the past several years. New Belgium is North America’s largest craft beer platform after joining forces with Bell’s Brewery in 2022.
With brands including Voodoo Ranger and Fat Tire Ale – America’s first certified carbon neutral beer, Two Hearted IPA and Oberon Ale, along with popular and innovative brands like Dominga Mimosa Sour, Hopslam, and La Folie Sour Brown Ale and an award-winning wood-aged sour program, New Belgium continues to outpace industry growth and launch brands at pace.
Danielle McLarnon, who has served as Interim CEO since August, will return to her role as Chief Financial Officer as Belongie transitions into the CEO role. “I want to thank Danielle for her steady leadership over the last few months as acting CEO,” Belongie added. “Danielle’s guidance through this transition has been invaluable.”
Belongie will commence in the CEO role effective immediately. The organisation will share details in the near future on plans for filling the Chief Marketing Officer role.