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James Davis MW joins Henkell Freixenet

Sparkling wine specialist Henkell Freixenet has appointed Master of Wine James Davis as its new vice president for product development.

Davis will begin the role on 5 July and will report directly to Henkell Freixenet board member, Eberhard Benz.

In his role he will lead the process of working with all Henkell Freixenet wineries “to ensure a consistent and exciting level of quality”, according to the company.

He will also work closely with Henkell Freixenet’s UK arm, Freixenet Copestick, to maximise sourcing opportunities and the quality level for the I heart Wines brand.

“I am really excited to start working with James. His experience, his wine expertise and his knowledge of the global wine industry will help Henkell Freixenet continue to improve and cement our place as the world’s leading sparkling wine producer,” Benz said.

“We have ambitious plans for the future of both still and sparkling wine and James’ recruitment will help us all achieve our ambitions. Sustainability, innovation and quality are at the heart of our business and we will continue to strive to improve, day by day, year by year,” he added.

Davis said of the appointment: “I have known the Henkell Freixenet Group for many years and have always been impressed by their innovation, quality and service levels. To help lead such an exciting global project is very exciting for me and I am looking forward to starting this new journey.”

Davis joins Henkell Freixenet from brewer and distiller, Adnams, where he was retail and commercial director.

He has extensive off-trade experience having worked for both Costco and Tesco, latterly heading up Tesco’s wine buying team. Prior to this, he worked for brewer and retailer Greene King, where he became a Master of Wine in 2013.

He has just finished an MBA and graduated with distinction from the University of East Anglia in Norwich. In addition, he is an accredited WSET tutor and also teaches for the MW Institute and occasionally at Dijon Business School.

Henkell Freixenet is the world’s leading sparkling wine producer, offering Sekt, Cava, Prosecco, Champagne and Crémant alongside a wide range of wine and spirits. The Group boasts subsidiaries in 30 countries and exports its brands to over 150 markets across the world.

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