Chapel Down hires TWE retail controller for sales role

English winery Chapel Down has hired a retail controller from drinks giant Treasury Wine Estates as the company’s new sales director.

Martin McGowan has been named as Chapel Down’s new sales director, having spent eight years working for Treasury Wine Estates’ retail arm.

McGowan has 15 years experience in the industry working for beer, wine and sprits brands, including Courvoisier, Stolichnaya, Wolfblass, Penfolds and Carlsberg.

He joined Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) in 2013, and was appointed the company’s retail controller in July last year.

He will move to Chapel Down with immediate effect, with a view to improving the distribution of the company’s wine and spirits ranges, as well as beer brand Curious Brewing, across the on- and off-trade.

Frazer Thompson, Chapel Down Group’s CEO, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Martin to the Chapel Down family.

“Going into our eighteenth year of business the breadth of Martin’s sales knowledge and relationships with key retailers and trade partners, combined with our passion for making distinctive English wine, premium spirits and contemporary beers and ciders, means an exciting new chapter in store for Chapel Down Group.”

“With the opening of the stunning Curious Brewery in Ashford, the iconic Gin Works in London and as we continue to lead the charge in English wine, I absolutely believe we are England’s most exciting drinks company,” McGowan said.

“But, most importantly we make delicious drinks of balance and style, each with a unique winemakers twist.”

Gross profit for the company’s wine and spirit division rose 12% to £3.626m last year, while its beer and cider was up 1% to £1.229m.

In its last annual results published in May, the company said it is looking to develop long-term export opportunities, particularly in the US. 2018 was its second full year exporting to the US, and growth, the company said was “limited only by [its] production”.

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