Alan has over 30 years of retail and brand building experience, primarily within the sports and fashion arenas. He started his business life early as a part-time sales assistant whilst studying for a Chemistry degree at Newcastle University. Since that time he has been involved at senior and board level with fast growing retail chains Including JD Sports and First Sports (formerly Blacks Leisure PLC.)
Initially based in the North East, Alan has experience of regional business cultures in many parts of the UK. He has been involved with integrating acquired businesses, both operationally and strategically, throughout retail expansions. These processes have given him invaluable experience in implementing successful change strategies.
Alan’s passion for product culminated in him becoming the first buyer to follow on from the owner at JD Sports. This allowed him to build up strategic, premium brand partnerships around the world. Then, as buying and merchandising director at First Sport, with the chain growing to over 200 UK stores, he managed and oversaw a buying budget in excess of £100 million.
Following his corporate experience, Alan launched an independent sales agency. This achieved a £1million turnover in the first year. Additionally he spent a four year period working for Pentland Brands, as Managing Director of Red or Dead and Clerk and Teller.