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Chapel Down CEO to step down next month

Chapel Down’s long-serving CEO Frazer Thompson is to step down as CEO in September, the English winemaker has announced.

Thompson will be succeeded by Andrew Carter, who is currently the managing director at Chase Distillery. Carter will join the business in mid-September with Thompson working alongside him to effect a handover. Thompson will remain a substantial shareholder as well as an advisor.

The company said that Thompson had decided to retire after two decades of building the English sparkling wine producer into one of the UK’s largest domestic biggest wine business.

Martin Glenn, chairman of the Chapel Down Group said that Thompson “has helped put English wine on the map” and was leaving with the great gratitude of the Chapel Down Board

“It is difficult to overstate his impact and leadership,” he said.

Thompson said that it was the ideal time to step aside and introduce some fresh energy and leadership to the business.

“After 20 years, with the company in good shape after the pandemic, and with a really exciting period of growth ahead,” he said.

“It has been a remarkable journey and a privilege to have had the opportunity to change the way the world thinks about English wine. We have built a fantastic team and an exciting brand with great growth prospects.

“I truly believe that the journey has just got more exciting.”

He added that he was delighted Carter was joining. “He brings a wealth of drinks experience and has the talent and energy to lead a fantastic team to new heights.”

Glenn added that the company was fortunate to have another high calibre executive in Carter, noting his “great track record in building wines and spirits businesses”.

He can “drive further growth at Chapel Down for the benefit of customers and shareholders alike,” he said.

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