Interview - James Davy, chairman of Davy's Wine Merchants, Shops, Bars and Dining Rooms

By BigHospitality Writer

- Last updated on GMT

Who is he? Chairman of Davy's Wine Merchants, Wineshop and 37 Wine Bars and Dining Rooms. How did he get into the industry? He was born into it. James is the fi fth generation of Davys to run the family company, set up in 1870. Although he ...

Who is he? Chairman of Davy's Wine Merchants, Wineshop and 37 Wine Bars and Dining Rooms.

How did he get into the industry? He was born into it.

James is the fi fth generation of Davys to run the family company, set up in 1870. Although he didn't plan it that way, all his work experience, from grape picking as a teenager to becoming a trainee with pub company J T Davies, prepared him for joining the family company in 1992. "I realised how unintentionally I had been training to do this all along," Davy says.

How did he get started? After fi ve years spent working for the company, he fi nally took the helm in 1997.

How much is he worth? The three companies have a combined turnover of £30m.

Best piece of advice? From my father: "Keep it simple".

Who does he admire in the industry? "I really like the other wine businesses that have a merchant background," he says.

"You can really feel the history and backing behind it when you walk into a Corney & Barrow bar and can tell the idea hasn't come out of a brainstorming session."

Most important thing he's learnt? "There are many people trying to do the same thing but if you try a little bit harder in the produce you offer and deliver on the promise of good service it is possible to stand out."

Future plans? "Now there are so many wine bars in London, site selection is much more important,"

says Davy. The company would be happy to grow at a rate of one wine bar a year for the next fi ve years. davy.co.uk

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