The Anheuser Busch brewing giant is losing one of its most seasoned and accomplished marketing executives in the wake of a substantial plunge in sales for Bud Light, its signature beer brand. Felipe Szpigel, the company’s Senior Vice President and President of the High End business division, is stepping down after 15 years of service. His departure was announced in a press release on Monday, following reports of a severe downturn in Bud Light’s sales in the United States. Since taking on the role of President in 2011, Szpigel has spearheaded Anheuser Busch’s initiatives to create an entire portfolio of high-end beers. His contributions to the business have included launching brands such as Stella Artois, Budweiser Black Crown, and most recently, Cabin Fever, a hard seltzer drink. The most successful of these brands, according to the press release, was Michelob Ultra, whose roll-out coincided with Szpigel’s tenure at the High End division. Thanks to the marketing efforts of Szpigel and his team, Michelob Ultra is now the third-most purchased beer in the country. The departure of Szpigel marks a substantial change in the leadership at Anheuser Busch. His absence will be felt acutely by the company, which now has to find a capable replacement who can restore Bud Light’s market share and re-establish the long-term viability of the company’s high-end brands. Szpigel initially joined Anheuser Busch in 2005 as the National Marketing Manager for the United States. During that time, he helped to develop and execute the company’s extensive advertising and marketing campaigns aimed at improving the Bud Light brand’s sales figures. Although the company has yet to announce Szpigel’s successor, the company has reportedly approached external candidates for the position in recent months. Whomever takes the helm, Anheuser Busch hopes that the new marketing executive can reverse the decline in Bud Light sales and improve the outlook for the company’s entire high-end beer portfolio.