In 1998, Guillaume created the premium vodka brand, SVEDKA, and launched it in the US. Building national distribution and developing high impact advertising campaign made SVEDKA the fastest growing vodka in the US. In 2007, with sales over 1,000,000 cases, and a 7% share of the imported vodka market, SVEDKA was sold to Constellation Brands, Inc., the world’s largest wine producer, for $400M.
Guillaume had the idea to launch a premium vodka after having worked for 10 years with Moet Hennessy (LVMH), first in New York (1985-1989) and then in Cognac, France at the Hennessy headquarters. While at Moet Hennessy, Guillaume held various sales and marketing positions that lead him to become the North American Market Director for Hennessy Cognac. In that role, he was instrumental in the rebirth of the Hennessy brand in the US and the launch of the Hennessy Martini campaign.
Since the sale of SVEDKA in 2007, Guillaume has been active in the venture capital market with a focus on premium consumer goods and beverages. As such, he has invested and advised brands like LEBLON, a Cachaca from Brazil, and TY KU, a line of super-premium Sake from Japan. He’s on the Board of SAVELLI srl, a maker of luxury phones, and CUVELIER LOS ANDES, a wine bodega in Mendoza, Argentina.
As a French citizen, Guillaume grew up in Paris where he received his college degree in 1982, and afterward, completed his military duty as a First Lieutenant with the French Mountain troops at the 13ème Bataillon de Chasseurs Alpin, in Chambery, France. Guillaume, is married to a native New Yorker and lives in New York City with his 3 children.
Guillaume has travelled the world to ski and climb. He’s Treasurer of the Board of the Knights, a Manhattan based “orchestra of friends” that creates music. Yo Yo Ma and Francis Ford Coppola are on the Knights Council (advisory board). The couple has supported the Kelly Brush Foundation, which uses sport to aide paralyzed athletes. His wife Andrea has been on Board of All (early childhood education) Souls School in NYC.