FEATURE23 May 2023

Chapel Down CEO Andrew Carter is counting on a new appreciation of English wine

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Andrew Carter has his eye firmly on a future that is fizzing with potential. Jane Simms sits down with the chief executive of wine producer Chapel Down to talk leadership, building brands and buying British.

a photo of andrew carter standing in a vineyard

When Andrew Carter joined the UK’s leading wine producer, Chapel Down, as chief executive in September 2021, he rolled up his sleeves and, as he puts it, “learned from the bottom up”.

It was harvest time, so he helped pick the grapes and did night shifts alongside colleagues to help process them. “I may be ‘an industry veteran’, ” he says – he has held senior leadership roles at Bacardi, Treasury Wine Estates and Bulmers, among others – “but you’ve got to understand every part of the particular business you’re joining; how it operates, what people do.”

Before he joined Chapel Down, which is based near Tenterden, on the edge of the Kent Weald, he’d been managing director of Chase Distillery, leading the growth of the gin and vodka business across 30 international markets before selling it to Diageo.

He was hired by Chapel Down’s non-executive chairman Martin Glenn – the man who, as chief executive of the FA, appointed ...