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Wednesday 3 September 2014

The ultimate garagiste

6th November, 2003 by db_staff - This article is over multiple pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

John Halewood has gone from running a start up business in his garage to being a global player in just 25 years.  How exactly has Halewood International arrived where it is today?

WHAT IS THE only way to make a small fortune in the wine and spirit business, goes the old saying? Well, start with a large one, is the usual answer.  Absolutely not so in the case of John Halewood.

During the end of the swinging sixties and early seventies, he was pursuing a modest career in the wine and spirit business with Liverpool based company, Hall and Bramley – at that time the northern agents for Gonzalez Byass Sherries.

John subsequently became Northern Sales Manager for GB and when Sherry sales were at their peak in the UK, he decided to ‘have a go’ and set up his own company, Halewood Vintners.

The year was 1978 and the venue for his first office, order taking department, distribution centre and warehouse was his own small garage.  At that time, in true entrepreneurial style, John was performing the role of tea boy, order taker, sales and marketing promoter, bottle washer, deliveryman and (most importantly) debt collector!

Twenty-five years later, Halewood International – as the company is now called though still entirely owned by John Halewood and his family – is the largest privately owned wines and spirit producer and distributor in the UK.

Colossal achievement

This thriving business now has an annual turnover of over more than £300 million, employs more than 1,400 people and has interests in Romania, South Africa, China and the USA, along with its wholly owned subsidiaries of Hall & Bramley, Chalie Richards and Classic Drinks.

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