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Thursday, November 30, 2023
John Peller’s retirement plan signals big change for Niagara winemaker
John Peller plans to step down as president and CEO of Andrew Peller Ltd. within the next year. File photo

John Peller is stepping down from the family business.

Peller quietly unveiled his plan to retire as president and chief executive officer of Andrew Peller Ltd. in a Nov. 9 news release outlining the vintner’s quarterly earnings.

The company operates a number of wineries in Niagara, including Peller Estates, Trius and Wayne Gretzky Estates in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Peller also operates NOTL’s Riverbend Inn as well as Thirty Bench Wine Makers in Lincoln.

“I am committed to providing leadership and support, together with the other members of the board and the Peller family, as we enter the next chapter of (Andrew Peller Ltd.’s) evolution,” John Peller said in announcing his retirement.

The Peller board is already engaged in the process to find the company’s next president and CEO.

The board said it wants to find “a CEO who will respect the company’s “core values and will continue the rich traditions that have been ingrained in the company due to the contributions, efforts and commitment of the Peller family.”

In addition to Peller announcing his intention to retire, independent board members Perry Miele, Shauneen Bruder, François Vimard and David Mongeau stepped down effective immediately, “to support a proactive refreshment of the board.”

Replacements are expected to be appointed within the next few weeks, the company said.

John is the third generation of Pellers to run the business, which also includes wineries in the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia.

In addition, the company produces and number of wine-based liqueurs, craft ciders and craft spirits, and owns 101 retail shops operating under the Wine Shop, Wine Country Vintners and Wine Country Merchants brands.

As for company financials, Peller’s sales were up marginally in the first six months of 2023 (ending Sept. 30) at $200.7 million versus $199.5 million over the same period in 2022.

Sales rose during the pandemic but have since dropped back to more traditional levels, the company noted.


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