Port Melbourne-based Starward whisky distillery is embarking on its next phase of growth, announcing new markets, expansion plans and a new CEO.
Simon Marton joins Starward as CEO with more than 20 years’ experience in wine and spirits, most recently as Global CMO of Treasury Wine Estates.
Marton said: “Starward is a brand I have admired for its innovative and unconventional strategy. I’m excited about the opportunity to propel Starward to be the first globally famous Australian Whisky brand, especially at such a pivotal time when the Australian spirits category is going from strength to strength both in the domestic and international markets.”
The new appointment comes after former CEO, Andrew Macdonald decided to step aside from his position to make way for a new leader to take Starward whisky to the next level.
“Andrew has been instrumental in establishing the platform for Starward’s growth over the last five years,” Starward founder David Vitale said.
“That commitment and leadership positions us today in the best possible place to take our whisky to the world.”
Over the last year Starward has expanded globally, launching an international presence in the UK, US, France, and Japan.
Vitale, who is now based in the US, added: “It’s hard to believe it was just three years ago we completed our monumental upgrade from Essendon Fields to Port Melbourne.
“Now, we are once again taking a huge leap to meet the rapidly growing, local and global, demand for our whiskies – particularly Two-Fold which has exceeded all of our sales expectations in our first year, winning Best Australian Blended at the World Whiskies Awards in London and 92 points from Wine Enthusiast and Whisky Cast in the US.”
To meet this demand, Starward also announced that it will significantly expand production capacity during the first half of 2020 with a multi-million-dollar investment.
“We’re all looking forward to working with Simon to pursue Starward’s potential in Australia and abroad,” Vitale said. “We have every reason to believe that our Starward bound ambition is in the right hands.”