Roger Gabb

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Roger Gabb is Executive Chairman of Western Wines Ltd, a £100m turnover business that he built up over 20 years to supply wine to the UK supermarket sector. His earlier career included introducing Volvic mineral water into the UK and a period with Distillers Company as European Brand Manager. He is a director of Strategic Communication Laboratories. [1] Gabb gave £500,000 to the Conservative Party in 2006.[2]

Roger Gabb, chairman of Western Wines, has fulfilled the ultimate business fantasy. He started his company in 1980 at his kitchen table in Shropshire, created a killer brand in 1995, then sold the whole shebang for an exceedingly cool £133m last year. By the time Canadian outfit, Vincor International, snapped up Gabb's company, it was the largest independent wine importer and distributor in the UK and Kumala was the only top 10 wine owned by a private company. Last year the brand achieved UK sales of 2.4m cases. But Kumala is only part of the story. In 1986 Gabb formed a partnership with Italian co-ops which ultimately resulted in Western Wines being responsible for one bottle in every case of Italian wine sold in the UK off-trade. The highly regarded Da Luca brand is one of his too.
An ex-captain in the Welsh Guards who did special forces services in Borneo and Kenya, Gabb is a keen sportsman and does a great deal of charitable work. In 2003 he climed Mera Peak, the highest of Nepal's designated trekking peaks, and in the process raised over £25,000 for charities including the Wine & Spirit Benevolent Fund. Gabb lives in Shropshire with his wife. He has two sons and a grandson. Gabb has led Western Wines from being largely an importer and supplier of private-label wine for the UK multiple grocers, to become one of the UK's largest branded suppliers of South African wine and a leading supplier to all retailers.[3]