Sir Ivan Menezes, chief executive of the world’s biggest spirits company Diageo, has died aged 63.
On Wednesday, the Guinness and Johnnie Walker maker said he “passed away following a brief illness, with his family at his side.”
The British-American national was born in the Indian city of Pune. He was set to retire at the end of the month.
Earlier this week, the firm said Menezes was in hospital for conditions including a stomach ulcer.
“This is an incredibly sad day. Ivan was undoubtedly one of the finest leaders of his generation,” Diageo chairman Javier Ferrán said.
“Ivan was there at the creation of Diageo and over 25 years, shaped Diageo to become one of the best performing, most trusted and respected consumer companies,” Mr Ferrán added.
Prior to Diageo, he held marketing and strategy positions at major companies including food and beverage giant Nestlé.
Menezes joined Diageo in 1997 when the firm was formed through the merger of brewery giant Guinness and London-based conglomerate Grand Metropolitan.
Over the course of his career, he held several senior roles at the company and was appointed chief executive in July 2013