pin Employee spotlight: David Ruiz - Category Manager for Confectionery

Employee spotlight: David Ruiz - Category Manager for Confectionery

You are the Category Manager for Confectionery at DFD. Can you explain us your professional background? What interests you about this category?

I started my career in Diageo Mexico working for the marketing and consumer planning department. I was able to work with different brands such as Johnnie Walker, Old Parr, Buchanan’s, Zacapa and J&B Scotch Whisky. After 3 years of good results, I was offered an opportunity as Regional Business Development Manager for Perrier (sparkling water) for LATAM. This was a big challenge as I had to move to Panama City. For 5 years I was able to manage the region with constant growth and expansion of the brand’s footprint.

What really interest me about the position is the business model that Duty Free Dynamics has assembled, as well as the brands that we represent. After having some years of experience in the LATAM market, I truly believe that this is the best way of distributing any category within the region. Also, Confectionary is a very interesting category as it has many different consumption moments (snacking, indulgence and gifting) which really challenges you to deliver the best strategy to fulfill the consumers demands.


You are a Mexican living in Panama. What do you love the most about this country?

After having lived in Panama for over 5 years, I can honestly say that this is a beautiful country in many ways. I really enjoy the fact that you have so many biodiverse settings in such close proximity. Also, I believe that it has a great life quality which includes low levels of pollution, safety, multicultural setting and the geographical location which allows you to travel around quite easily.

Since the first day people have made me feel like home.


How would you describe your job to a child?

"I am in charge of making different types of candy and chocolate travel around the world so that you can find them in a local store."

Or simply: "I deliver sweetness to different parts of the world."


What kind of Monopoly player are you?

I am the kind of Monopoly player that likes to invest money on real state and setting a big footprint along the board.


If you could have a superpower, what would it be?



What would you take with you to a desert island?

A knife, a book, sunscreen, resistance bands (exercise gear), a notebook and a disposable camera.


What would your pet say about you if we ask for a reference?

My pet would probably say I am a caring person, affectionate and that I pay a lot of attention to detail, but above all that I treat him not as a pet, but as family.


What is the funniest thing you have ever seen a stranger do?

Street dancers / Stand-up comedy in the Eiffel Tower.


You love cooking. What is your best dish?

My best dish would definitely be the Paella (with octopus, lobster tails, clams and shrimps) paired with a good white wine.


What is your favorite kind of Sunday?

My favorite kind of Sunday is the one in which I wake up early to attend the religious service and afterwards go to a restaurant outside the city to enjoy a nice meal with my friends. I also like to walk on the “Cinta Costera” to enjoy the sunset.


Best destination ever?

Italy; It is quite diverse, rich in culture and has great food and wine.


What is the funniest thing that has happened to you recently?

I fell while running in front of a big crowd of people… So, I just picked up myself quickly and kept running like nothing happened.


Imagine you find a lottery ticket that makes you a winner of $10 million dollars. What would you do? 

- Buy a house or pay off my close family’s debt.

- Buy a house to myself or finish paying my mortgage.

- Invest 50% of the money in different business opportunities.

- Start a foundation for orphaned children.

- Take a nice trip to The Maldives.

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