Whyte & Mackay, the Glasgow-based spirits group, has named John Beard, a former head of Bacardi, as its new chief executive. Beard, the former chief executive of Bacardi Brown Forman, will replace Ashwin Malik, who is returning to India. Whyte & Mackay has appointed Beard, who has held a 19-year career at Bacardi, with the aim of driving aggressive growth in home and overseas markets. The United Spirits Group controlled by Indian tycoon Vijay Mallya acquired Whyte & Mackay in May 2007 for £595m.