Online wine retailer appoints new CEO after on-trade acquisition

London-based online wine retailer, 31Dover.com has appointed former Naked Wines marketing director James Bagley as its new CEO, after acquiring on-trade supplier Vanquish Wines.

James Bagley has been appointed as the new CEO at online wine company 31Dover

Bagley will head up a the newly enlarged business, which now includes on-trade wine wholesaler Vanquish Wines, which was created 12 years ago by the founders of 31Dover’s parent company DMD Venture, but only acquired by DMD Ventures in the second quarter this year for an undisclosed sum.

Vanquish Wines supplies the premium on-trade, notably hotels, restaurants, clubs and bars, and has revenue of around £4 million.

A spokesman for the parent company said the addition would complement 31Dover’s online retail business, and that Bagley’s appointment would strengthen the leadership of the team and drive the next leg of growth for both the online retail and on-trade businesses, but it has yet to reveal how the new operation will work in practice.

However a spokesman promised an innovative solution that would “bridge the gap” between the two businesses, which will both retain their current names and create synergies in procurement, logistics, marketing and sales.

“Combined, the business allows Vanquish to have both an extended highly curated product range deployed through an immediate nationwide next day delivery platform and offers the retail arm improved economies of scale, brand owner relations and cross marketing potential with the leading on-trade establishments in central London,” he said.

31Dover, which was founded in 2012 by Vanquish Wines directors’ David Elghanayan and Jimmy Metta under the DMD Ventures umbrella, has seen year-on-year growth, with revenue forecast to double year-on-year to £15 million, it said.

Bagley, who was rumoured to be in the running for the job, was a former marketing director at Naked Wines UK, and vice president of sales and marketing at Nakedwines.com USA and also previously worked at Sky and T-mobile.

Elghanayan said he was pleased Bagley was joining the strong board and that his “test and learn” experience at Naked gave him a “unique experience and compelling style: that would benefit the company as it scaled up.

“Fresh from his experience at Naked Wines UK and USA, James brings significant marketing skill at driving loyalty and retention, growing and scaling businesses, and building and maintaining an entrepreneurial and customer-centric culture,” he said..”

Bagley said it was the “perfect time” to invest and scale up the business, which aimed to be ”the most influential and aspirational voice in UK drinks”.

Other members of the board include chairman Roger Metta, Ramzi Gedeon of TPG Capital, Vadim Jivov of the Renaissance Oil Company, Ziad Noujaim, and Bertrand Perrodo, the heir of a French oil magnate who was revealed last month to be one of the key owners of the business.

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