Meet the team

Founder and Chief Strategy Officer

Matt Steinhofel

Matt has over 20 years' experience working in different hospitality industries in South Africa, United States and the UK. Starting in the casual dining sector at aged 18 as an Assistant Manager for the Mugg & Bean coffee chain in South Africa. Matt moved to Miami Florida in 2002 and started working with Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest cruise company with over 100 ships over 10 brands including P&O, Cunard, Holland America and Carnival to name a few. Matt has lived in the UK since 2005 working within the Sales and Marketing team at Premier Automotive Group (PAG) which had Land Rover, Jaguar, Aston Martin Lagonda, Volvo and the Ford GT. In 2007 Matt joined the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) where he ran the membership for 8 years and grew it from 9,500 venues to over 23,500 by 2015 with big multiple groups like Stonegate Pubs, Greene King, Mitchells and Butlers, JD Wetherspoon, Punch Taverns, Admiral Taverns, EI Group. Casual dining groups like Carluccios, TGI Fridays, Cote, Byron and late-night groups like Deltic, Living Ventures, Ministry of Sound to name a few. The last 5 years Matt has been a hospitality consultant working with various brands in the on-trade and growing to over a dozen clients.

Commercial Director

Rupert Culme-Seymour

Rupert’s hospitality sector experience has been gleaned over a career spanning 22 years to date. Rupert enjoyed 19 years in the Brewery sector with the mergers & acquisition of Courage to Heineken UK, his career spanned roles in supply chain, sales capability and On-Trade sales leadership. Rupert went down the Trade Association route and as Chief Operating Officer he assisted the merger of The Association of Multiple Retailers (ALMR) and the British Hospitality Association (BHA) to form UKHospitality with over 65,000 venues in membership. Rupert developed further skills and experience in the Occupational Health & Wellbeing sector before becoming an ILM endorsed Leadership Coach & Institute of Hospitality Member & Mentor with his own consultancy business.

Associate Advisor

Ed Cottrell

Ed Cottrell has just returned from Singapore, where he was a Managing Director for William Grant & Sons for 5 years. He is now a freelance consultant based in London, specialising in advice to fast growing consumer drinks brands that want to scale up at home and internationally, for which the On Trade consultancy is an ideal platform. Prior to Grants, Ed was Commercial Director at EI Group PLC and a Board member at Cask Marque and the BII. This was on the back of a 15 year career with Diageo PLC. He started his career as an Officer in the Coldstream Guards.

Senior Sales Consultant

Simon Davies

Simon has over 30 years’ experience in the drinks industry, the last 15 years focusing on brand placement and implementing business plans in the export markets.He has worked for Diageo, Guinness, Halewood International, Russian Co, and EWG, on their portfolio of brands.His last eight years have been with Chase Distillery who have been acquired by Diageo, a complete full circle.Simon has a wealth of experience placing new brands throughout export markets and now has his own consultancy company, Export Drinks, who is working closely with On-Trade Consultancy developing beverages into the worldwide drinks market.

Senior Business Consultant

Jamie Durkin

Jamie has been working in the on-trade for over 20 years. He started his career working in restaurants before managing some of the UK's most successful bars, restaurants and nightclubs. Over the past 10 years Jamie has worked in different sales roles within the on-trade, working for SAB Miller, Duvel Moortgat and more recently Served Hard Seltzer. He has looked after customers within HORECA, MOT and high-profile premium groups. He is a beer and wine buff and holds a WSET level 3 certificate. Jamie is determined, motivated and extremely passionate about the hospitality industry and enjoys building long lasting partnerships with all of his customers.

Senior Drinks Consultant

Luke Wade

Luke has over 20 years’ experience in the UK On-Trade having started his career as a marketing manager looking after Budweiser Budvar, Erdinger and Leffe beer.It was upon joining SAB Miller that Luke then embarked upon his journey into sales where he managed the London team for the launch of draught Peroni as well as securing the first strategic draught accounts for Pilsner Urquell including Geronimo Inns and Corney and Barrow.Luke joined COS brands in 2007 where he was instrumental in launching Kopparberg Cider and the brand enjoyed exponential growth. As On-Trade Controller Luke managed and mentored the national sales team before moving on and setting up his own drinks company, Proof Drinks.Proof Drinks was set up in 2011 to help challenger brands launch in the marketplace and partnerships were formed with the likes of Spendrup’s brewery (Pistonhead Lager), Toorank (Rebellion Rum and Sloane's Gin) and numerous other brand clients.On leaving the Proof Drinks set-up Luke has continued to work in the drinks industry with his own consultancy business offering mentoring, brand strategy and implementation for various brands.

Senior Drinks Consultant

Julian Penny

Julian is a passionate drinks consultant with more than 25 years’ experience working within the on-trade. Dedicated to brand development, Julian assists companies in nurturing relationships and securing new business. An expert in sales, marketing and above all, beverages, Julian has helped countless organisations from independent start-ups through to established names – to reach their full potential.From 2004 to 2009, Julian harnessed his skills with independent UK drinks company Global Brands. In his roles as National Account Manager, On-trade and Export Manager, Julian developed new business through above supply routes, gaining profitable brand listings and distribution for the likes of VK and Corky’s. Some of his key accounts included Pernod Ricard, The Beer Seller, HB Clarke, NDD, Independent Wholesale, LA Drinks Northern Ireland and regional brewers Everards and Fullers to name but a few..Julian also spent 6 years with Krombacher Brauerie as Sales Agent for the UK, during this time, he negotiated and secured extensive listings for a number of brands - namely Pils and Weizen - and controlled PR and advertising budgets, working closely with media partners to raise the awareness and profile of Krombacher to a point where everyone had heard about it from Lands End to John O Groats! (Mission Accomplished)To date, Julian has worked closely with the likes of Blackwater Distillery, Hofmeister Brewing Company, Super Bock and Navigation Brewery on a consultancy basis. Recently, Julian has co-founded an exciting new business, PEM Australia/UK, and continues to creatively collaborate with beer and spirits brands within the UK and globally.

Tech Business Development Consultant

Jon Reay

Jon has extensive experience in the drinks and hospitality industries, working with the likes of Diageo, Just Eat and William Grant & Sons.Through his own consultancy, Jon has helped drinks and hospitality businesses grow their reach, revenue, reputation and profitability by elevating how they look at and harness digital – from business models to tech platforms, customer engagement, use of data, automation and innovation.Jon produces an annual industry report, Digital in Drinks, which has featured in Drinks International, Harpers Wine & Spirit and BeverageDaily.With a deep technical background and strong commercial mindset, Jon has experience with a wide range of technology solutions to which he brings significant value to IT, marketing and business strategies for clients. Jon has written for numerous publications and spoken at events and conferences in Europe and North America.During the Covid crisis in 2020, Jon volunteered his time to chair a number of webinars for the hospitality industry in partnership with TRADE Hospitality and LUX Rewards.

Senior Consultant - London & South East

Matt Francis

Matt started his foodservice career in media and publishing over a decade ago. He can comfortably say that he has enjoyed every aspect of the industry, including the friendships built across a wide range of sector networks that he has made along the way. He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the On-Trade Consultancy team on the key areas of the commercial sales cycle and the end-to-end relationship management for clients.

Category and Brand Development Strategist

Jo Halstead

Jo has enjoyed working in hospitality for more than 15 years, during which time she has become a successful and intuitive Brand, Category & Channel Development Strategist. Jo has specialist expertise in shopper & customer marketing, and category & channel development, driving value in the food and drink occasion. Her experience spans multiple drinks categories across the ‘’out-of-home’’ and ‘’at-home channels’’. Her career to date has seen her skills and experience develop at Scottish & Newcastle, Greene King, Diageo, SAB Miller and Britvic (in the UK and Australia). Jo’s passion is to explore trends and harnessing powerful insights to optimise the occasion. She collaborates with brands and retailers to deliver commercially effective and operationally efficient path-to-purchase strategies; from compelling range & offer, to experience-enhancing serve, service & activation.

Operations & Events Manager

Gemma Finlay

Gemma has built her career within the hospitality industry over the last 20 years with a focus on operations and events management. Her career began in sales and events for some prestigious Greenwich venues. She went on to develop her event talents, planning and running high profile events at the O2. Gemma later moved into corporate events at Vinopolis and also spent time working with contract caterer, Elior running events within the Science Museum, Kensington Palace and Southwark Cathedral. Since 2011, Gemma has been an integral member of ETM Group playing a critical role providing support and guidance to the Operations team. She is a pivotal point of contact to customers providing quality customer service for the group.She brings to OTC, a positive attitude, great client relationship management, organisation, and passion.

Marketing Executive

 Luisa Witney

Luisa is currently a third-year student studying Business Management with Marketing at the University of Brighton. Her time at University has enabled Luisa to gain experience with digital and social media marketing and analytics. Luisa has worked for Lovisa as a retail assistant for the past year, through which she has gained valuable knowledge on analysing shop performance and working with customers. She has also worked for Groundswell Surf Shop as part of their marketing team, which helped to further develop her social media marketing skills. Luisa is currently a part of a research team for Watch This Sp_ce, a consultancy company dedicated to improving diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Luisa was born in Kenya, raised in Uganda and has spent most of her gap year in Italy working as an Au-pair. Her real passion is to create a career in ethical and sustainable marketing after she has completed her studies.

Marketing Consultant

Jessica Dahlin

Jessica moved to the UK from Stockholm Sweden 20 years ago and has been a creative force in London’s hospitality scene ever since, creating and leading successful marketing campaigns for some of the capital’s most reputable restaurants and bars.Jess has previously headed Events & marketing up for ETM Group London, one of London’s most renowned pub and restaurant operators before she went on to become the Marketing Director for Livelyhood Pub Group Venues. In 2021 she set up her own marketing consultancy, Vass London Ltd, who is working closely with On-Trade Consultancy helping all their clients meet their marketing and brand objectives.

Graphic Designer

Adam Carnell

Adam has a passion for transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary through design. Having achieved a BA First Class Honours Degree in Graphic Design from De Montfort University, Adam went on to become a full-time freelance designer. With talented skills in branding, brand packaging, web and graphic design Adam has built up an amazing portfolio enabling brands such as Desperados, MyMatcha Tea and our more recently our client Singolo Wines to achieve their design visions, professionally and successfully.


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