Michael Keyes will take the reins at Proximo Spirits Inc. in Jersey City as president and chief executive officer, effective Feb. 4.
Keyes succeeds Michael Cheek who has overseen operations on an interim basis since July 2018 at the Jersey City manufacturer, importer and distributor of spirits including 1800 Tequila, Bushmills Irish Whiskey, Three Olives Vodka, Jose Cuervo among others.
Keyes brings more than three decades’ experience to the position, including over 10 years as president, North America Region for Brown-Forman Corp.
“Proximo has grown rapidly over the past decade, and I look forward to working with the company’s outstanding management team and distributor network to build on Proximo’s phenomenal track record of brand development and commercial success,” Keyes said in a prepared statement. “Proximo already has one of the strongest brand portfolios in the industry, and is particularly well positioned in the dynamic, high-growth categories of tequila, Irish whiskey and North American whiskey.”
“Under my leadership, Proximo will continue its dual mission of responsible stewardship of iconic legacy brands and aggressive development of innovative growth brands,” he added.
Proximo is an affiliate of Becle, a global distilled spirits company and, according to the company, the world’s largest producer of tequila. Cheek will continue at Proximo as a member of the Becle board of directors.
“I have known Mike Keyes for over 25 years as a man of tremendous talent and integrity,” Cheek said in a prepared statement. “I am thrilled that Mike has agreed to join us, and that Proximo and its employees, distributors and business partners will be in such good hands going forward.”