Our People

Our core purpose is to champion sociability & help people to live well.

It’s the value we deliver to the communities around us and is central to our business strategy.

Exceptional beverages, trusted brands, vibrant venues, innovative new products; we constantly challenge ourselves to do more, to go further, to get out in front of the pack.

At the centre of this is our people. Dedicated men and women with a shared purpose, all pulling in the same direction, thinking big and never settling. They are doing things right for the long term and putting customers at the heart of everything we do.

It takes courage to make things happen, and our people are empowered to push boldly forward and do things differently, always in search of that something special. This something special is what we’ve fostered at Lion. We have an unrelenting commitment to our culture, which means that the way we achieve success is just as important as the accomplishment itself.

Our Leadership

Whilst we are no longer listed on a stock exchange, we have decided to retain the best of the public company model through our balanced board structure, combining experienced local board directors and representatives of our parent company Kirin, who offer a wealth of experience in food and beverages across Asia.

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Our Leadership

Stuart Irvine

Lion Chief Executive Officer

Stuart Irvine was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Lion in January 2013. Prior to Lion, Stuart was CEO of Nestle Russia and Eurasia, a $2 billion company with 14 production sites and 10,000 people.

Stuart’s career in Nestle started in 1998 as Sales Director for the UK “Friskies” pet care business. In 2002 he was appointed Group Sales Director and Managing Director of Foodservices Nestle UK. Over the next ten years he held various Managing Director and CEO roles within the UK and Europe, covering such countries as Spain, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland and the Baltics, before moving to Russia.

Stuart has extensive knowledge of fast moving consumer goods, sales and marketing having also worked for Proctor and Gamble and Spillers Pet foods.

Our Leadership

James Brindley

Managing Director, Lion Beer Australia

James Brindley joined Lion in 1994, and after various roles in finance, procurement, sales and marketing and an eight year stint with Lion in China was appointed Managing Director of Lion Australia in 2009.

James has an economics degree from the University of Sydney and an MBA from the AGSM. He has been on the board of Drinkwise Australia for eleven years, is a board member and past Chairman of the Brewers Association of Australia and is a founding council member of Alcohol Beverages Australia. He is also a board member of the Sydney Children’s Hospitals Foundation.

James is deeply involved in our corporate initiatives around mental health, inclusivity and our reconciliation action plan.

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Our Leadership

Alicia Purtell

People & Culture Director - Lion

Alicia Purtell was appointed People & Culture Director of Lion in August 2017. Alicia joined the business in 2005, performing various roles including Talent Director, Strategy & Insights Director and People and Culture Director Beer, Spirits and Wine Australia. Prior to joining Lion, Alicia worked at Citibank, Westpac and Zurich.

Alicia has a passion for Coaching and Positive Psychology, bringing this passion to life as a Senior Associate with the Positivity Institute working with not for profits and the education sector.

Our Leadership

Libby Davidson

Lion Group General Counsel and External Relations Director

Libby Davidson was appointed as Lion’s Group General Counsel & External Relations Director in 2015. Lion is an adult beverages manufacturer with operations in Australia, New Zealand, US and UK and market-leading brands across the beer, wine, spirits, seltzer and non-alcoholic beverage categories.

Libby leads Lion’s Legal, External Relations & Sustainability teams and is also Lion’s Company Secretary. She chairs Kirin’s Global Sustainability Forum, Lion’s Indigenous Advisory Council and Lion’s Modern Slavery Working Group.

Libby is a member of Chief Executive Women, a graduate member of AICD, a Vincent Fairfax Ethical Leadership fellow and a non-executive director on the board of law firm Sparke Helmore.

Before joining Lion, Libby spent 10 years with PepsiCo and Tricon/Yum Restaurants International, in legal counsel roles supporting the PepsiCo and Tricon/Yum businesses across Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, UK and Europe.

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Our Leadership

Craig Baldie

Country Director, New Zealand

Craig was appointed to the role of Country Director for Lion New Zealand in February 2021. Prior to this appointment, he was the Marketing Director for Lion Australia and New Zealand.

Craig joined Lion in 1994 as a sales representative in Lion’s Wine & Spirits division before transferring to the Brewery division in 1999. During his career at Lion, Craig has held a number of leadership roles across both sales and marketing.

Craig has extensive experience working across the beer, wine, spirits and RTD categories in Australia, New Zealand and global markets. He has a deep passion for people and brands and has been recognised internally and externally for his leadership and brand building capabilities. Craig has been awarded the title of New Zealand’s most effective marketer twice by the NZ Commercial Communication Council – the only person to have received this honour on two occasions.

Our Leadership

Matt Tapper

Managing Director, Lion Global Markets

Matt Tapper was appointed Managing Director - Little World Beverages following its establishment on 1 October 2015.  Matt previously held the position of National Marketing Director for Lion’s Beer, Spirits & Wine business in Australia. This role was also responsible for Lion Australia's craft beer businesses. Matt joined Lion in 1997 in New Zealand, relocated to Australia in 2001, and has held numerous Sales & Marketing roles throughout his career at Lion.

He commenced his career in New Zealand with Mars, marketing and selling pet food and confectionery.  He then moved to London and worked for Dairy Crest, marketing & selling dairy products to the UK grocery trade. He returned to New Zealand in 1997 and joined Lion.

He holds a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from Auckland University in Finance. Matt more recently completed a Global Executive MBA from Sydney University, studying in Sydney, Bangalore, Silicon Valley & London. Matt was elected the Chair of the Australian Association of National Advertisers from 2015-19. He is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

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Stephanie Nixon - Lion CFO
Our Leadership

Stephanie Nixon

Lion Chief Financial Officer

Stephanie was appointed Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Lion at the beginning of 2015, having previously held the role of Finance Director for Lion’s Australian beer business. As CFO, Stephanie leads the company’s functions in strategy and corporate development, finance and accounting, tax, treasury, shared services, audit and risk management, information technology. Stephanie has over 20 years’ experience in the FMCG industry, having worked at Glaxo Smithkline and Unilever prior to Lion. Stephanie has a Degree in Business, a Masters in Management and is a CPA.

Our Board

Hiroaki Takaoka

Director
Bachelor of Information Science (UTokyo), MBA Sloan Fellows Program, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Mr. Hiroaki Takaoka was appointed as a Director of the Lion Board in April 2018.  Mr. Takaoka joined the Kirin Brewery Company Limited in 1993 and throughout his career has held a number of senior planning and strategy positions across the Kirin Group, including Senior Manager of Corporate Strategy and Investment Strategy of Kirin Holdings Company Limited.  He is currently the Kirin Strategy and IT Liaison Director at Lion.

Residence
Sydney, Australia

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Our Board

Sir Rod Eddington AO

Chairman, Independent Non–Executive Director
B.Eng.(Hons)(UWA), M.Eng.Sci.(UWA), Hon.LLD(UWA), D.Phil.(Oxon)

Sir Rod Eddington was appointed as Chairman to the board of Lion in March 2012, having been appointed to the board in March 2011. He also joined the Kirin Board in March 2020.

One of Australia’s most experienced and accomplished business leaders, Sir Rod had a long career in the aviation industry and is a former CEO of Cathay Pacific Airways, Executive Chairman of Ansett and CEO of British Airways. In 2005, Sir Rod was awarded a Knighthood by the British Government for services to civil aviation and in 2015 was honoured by the Japanese Government with the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun for his contribution to strengthening the economic relations between Australia and Japan. Along with a number of non-executive directorships, Sir Rod also serves as Chairman of J P Morgan’s Asia Pacific Advisory Council and Infrastructure Partnerships Australia.  He is a member of the APEC Business Advisory Council and President of the Australia Japan Business Cooperation Committee.

Directorship

  • John Swire & Sons Pty Ltd (1997)
  • CLP (China Light & Power) Holdings Ltd (2006)
  • The Herald & Weekly Times (2019)

Residence
Melbourne, Australia

Our Board

Paula Dywer

Independent Non–Executive Director
B.Comm, FCA, FAICD, F.Fin

Paula Dwyer was appointed to the Board of Lion in March 2012 and is Chair of the Audit, Finance and Risk Committee.

Ms Dwyer had an executive career in finance, holding senior positions in investment management at Calibre Asset Management, investment banking at Ord Minnett (now J P Morgan) and chartered accounting at Price Waterhouse. Ms. Dwyer specialised in corporate advisory and equity capital markets including takeovers, capital raisings, trade sales and privatization.

Ms Dwyer is a professional company director and is presently Chairman of Tabcorp Holdings Limited, Independent Non-Executive Director of ANZ, and Chairman of the Board Audit Committee. Ms Dwyer is also a Member of the Takeovers Panel.

Residence
Melbourne, Victoria

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Our Board

Ryosuke Mizouchi

Non–Executive Director
Bachelor of Economics (HIT) MBA (MIT Sloan School of Management)

Mr. Ryosuke Mizouchi was appointed as Non-Executive Director of the Lion Board in March 2017.  Mr. Mizouchi previously served as an Executive Director of the Lion Board from 2010 to 2012, and Non-Executive Director from 2012 to 2015.

Mr. Mizouchi has been with Kirin group companies since 1982, mainly in marketing insight, international business, and corporate planning departments, and is currently a Senior Executive Officer of Kirin Holdings Company, Limited, overseeing the Creating Shared Value (CSV) function of the whole group.

Residence
Tokyo, Japan

Our Board

Keisuke Nishimura

Non-Executive Director
Bachelor’s Degree (Yokohama National University), MBA (University of Washington)

Mr. Keisuke Nishimura was appointed as Non-Executive Director of the Lion Board in March 2019.

Mr. Nishimura has been with Kirin group companies since 1980, gaining considerable experience and insights through a variety of roles and Directorships, mainly in the areas of human resources, corporate planning and international business management. He is currently Senior Executive Vice President of Kirin Holdings Company, Limited, overseeing the strategy, business alliance and investment, overseas business, and global craft beer function of the whole group.

Residence
Tokyo, Japan

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Our Board

Stuart Irvine

Chief Executive Officer

Stuart Irvine was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Lion in January 2013. Prior to Lion, Stuart was CEO of Nestle Russia and Eurasia, a $2 billion company with 14 production sites and 10,000 people.

Stuart’s career in Nestle started in 1998 as Sales Director for the UK “Friskies” pet care business. In 2002 he was appointed Group Sales Director and Managing Director of Foodservices Nestle UK. Over the next ten years he held various Managing Director and CEO roles within the UK and Europe, covering such countries as Spain, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland and the Baltics, before moving to Russia.

Stuart has extensive knowledge of fast moving consumer goods, sales and marketing having also worked for Proctor and Gamble and Spillers Pet foods.

Residence
Sydney, Australia

Our Board

Craig Dunn

Non-Executive Director
Bachelor of Commerce (University of Melbourne), Fellow of The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia.

Craig Dunn is an experienced non-executive director, currently sitting on the boards of Westpac and Telstra.  He is also chair of The Australian Ballet.  Craig has more than 25 years' experience in financial services, including as CEO of AMP Limited from 2008 to 2013.

Craig has a strong interest in emerging technologies and chairs the International Standards Technical Committee on Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies, and is the former chair of the Australian Government's Fintech Advisory Group and Stone and Chalk Limited (fintech hub).

Craig has lived and worked in both Europe and Asia, and is a former Board member of the Australian Japanese Business Cooperation Committee. 

Residence
Australia

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Our Brands

Ordering with Lion

At Lion, nothing excites us more than great brands. Talk to one of our team today about how to order some of the best beverage brands on the market.