Mackie’s appoints new managing director as Mac Mackie steps down

Mackie’s appoints new managing director as Mac Mackie steps down

Mac Mackie and Stuart Common

Mackie’s of Scotland has appointed Stuart Common as managing director, as Mac Mackie steps down from the role and takes up his new position as executive chairman.

Mr Common, 36, has secured the role after working at the family business for more than 16 years at the Aberdeenshire firm, latterly as its sales and marketing director.

His appointment commences with immediate effect as former MD Mr Mackie becomes executive chairman to have more time to take a strategic overview of the business and its development.

Mr Mackie has held the MD role since 1998 when he succeeded his father and Mackie’s founder, Maitland Mackie.

He said: “Stuart has already become an integral part of our senior management team over the last decade and I’m confident that he’s the right person to step into our MD role.

“He embodies the culture that underpins everything we do, not to mention his close ties with our largest supermarket, wholesale and foodservice trade accounts, many of which he personally established and built up.

“We’re putting in place the foundations for the business to continue to flourish. Stuart is young enough to thrive in the role for many years to come and will drive our agenda of growth, development and change.”

Mackie’s remains a family business, with Mr Mackie’s sister Kirstin McNutt continuing in her role as head of NPD and the recent arrival of his nephew Angus Hayhow marking the first of the fifth generation to join the business.

Mr Mackie has added: “We’re proud to be a family business, and Stuart’s appointment will help ensure Mackie’s continues to thrive and grow for future generations.”

Edinburgh born and raised, Mr Common started working at Mackie’s in 2006 on a year-long placement during his studies at Robert Gordon University business school. While there, he began to forge a career in sales before moving to Aberdeen Journals in 2011.

The former Balerno High School pupil returned to Mackie’s in 2012 as national account manager, taking responsibility for Mackie’s largest accounts, progressing to sales director in 2019. He took on an expanded sales and marketing director role in early 2022. Since 2019, Mackie’s has seen its turnover grow from £16.7 million to £18.5m (FY 2021).

Mr Common is well known in the local business community, being actively involved in supporting and promoting the Scottish food & drink sector, for example through his holding voluntary positions on the food, drink and agriculture board with Opportunity North East – a private sector led economic group, and his serving on the board of Developing the Young Workforce North East for more than six years.

Mr Common said: “Mackie’s is a company that refuses to stand still, which is a huge source of motivation for me and my colleagues.

“I’ve enjoyed being part of a management team with such clear commitment to change, growth and internal investment to build and prepare for the future. The shared vision of continued growth and diversification is testament to the leadership that we have had in place since our inception as an ice cream business in 1986 and chocolate maker since 2016.

“It is a huge privilege to be entrusted with this role at what is one of Scotland – and the UK’s – best known family businesses.

“Mac has left a tremendous legacy, his hard work and determination has helped bring Mackie’s to the fore, and I am excited to develop the brand further and, with his continued guidance, continue pushing Mackie’s forward as one of Scotland’s best food companies, expanding sales around the world and furthering the sustainability goals at the heart of the company.”

As the brand grows, Mackie’s still produces all its ice cream using fresh milk and cream from the dairy herd at its fifth generation family farm, Westertown, near Inverurie in north east Scotland.

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