James Watt to step down as BrewDog CEO

BrewDog has announced that James Arrow, currently COO, will succeed James Watt as CEO of the company, as part of a succession plan put in place last year.

Seventeen years after co-founding the business Watt has decided to step down as chief executive but will stay on the company board as ‘captain & co-founder’ and remains a major shareholder.

“James Watt spoke to me last year about continuing to play a role with the business while freeing up time to concentrate on his other projects and interests,” said Allan Leighton, BrewDog chair. “We subsequently put in place a succession plan by recruiting James Arrow as COO and strengthening the wider senior leadership team.”

Arrow joined BrewDog from Boots Opticians, where he was managing director, in September 2023. Prior to that he spent a decade at Dixons Carphone in a variety of senior roles including e-commerce, trading, operations, sales and transformation.

James Watt added: “I have loved co-founding this amazing business and leading it for the last 17 years. I am excited to take a bit of time off, to travel, to spend more time with my family and friends. I am also looking forward to being able to dedicate some more time to my other business interests.”