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John Kelly Appointed as Commercial Director

Carlow, Ireland


Royal Oak, County Carlow, Ireland – 3rd October, 2017: Walsh Whiskey Distillery, producers of The Irishman and Writers’ Tears premium whiskeys and one of the leaders of the Irish whiskey renaissance, has appointed John Kelly to the newly created role of Commercial Director. Prior to this, John had worked for Diageo, where he held a range of senior positions in the Irish, Global Travel and Middle-Eastern business units.

John is leading the company’s Sales & Marketing function as Walsh Whiskey Distillery prepares for significant growth in the coming years. As well as working closely with founder Bernard Walsh on business strategy, brand building and new product development John has specific responsibility for developing the company’s route to market across the 45 countries where the portfolio is available plus establishing new markets around the globe.

Announcing the appointment of John as Commercial Director, Walsh Whiskey Distillery Founder and Managing Director, Bernard Walsh, said: “This is a key appointment and role in the development of our company. We are delighted to have attracted and secured someone of John’s experience and stature within the drinks sector. John’s extensive international network and experience is already proving to be invaluable.”

Commenting on his new role John Kelly said: “It is wonderful to be involved in the Irish whiskey renaissance, helping an indigenous product become a world leader again. I am incredibly excited by that challenge and delighted to be working with Bernard and the team – Walsh Whiskey’s track record, over a decade, of developing and building two fantastic whiskey brands in The Irishman and Writers’ Tears is hugely impressive. To join such a talented and passionate team and work in the magical setting of the distillery at Royal Oak estate is very special.”

A native of Belfast, John is married and has a daughter and three sons.