BREWER Scottish and Newcastle has ended an 11-month search for a chief executive to take over from Sir Brian Stewart.

Tony Froggatt, 54, will join the company next month from wine and spirits group Seagram, where he was executive president for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Sir Brian, who will now take on a non-executive role, took charge while a long-term candidate was found.

The hunt for a successor was launched last May when managing director Guy Dickson announced his retirement at the end of 2002. Mr Dickson had shared executive duties with Sir Brian.

Mr Froggatt worked at companies including Gillette, Heinz and Cinzano.

He said: "The company has developed impressive strategic positions and excellent commercial relationships in many of the biggest and best beer markets in Europe and beyond.