About Us

People

Based in London, New York, Dublin, Amsterdam and San Francisco, the global footprint and exceptional range of experience within the team enable us to fully support our portfolio of founder-led brands.

Frank Lampen

CEO and Co-Founder

Frank Lampen

CEO and Co-Founder

Frank has set up several businesses, and advised dozens more, both inside and outside of drinks. He has a wide understanding of deal structures, launch strategies and effective brand positioning, and helps founders look for and achieve game-changing pivots to drive rapid growth. He has over ten years' experience in drinks, and blogs at frankaboutfood.co.uk

Heidi Dillon Otto

Managing Director - North America

Heidi Dillon Otto

Managing Director - North America

Heidi brings 20 years of expertise in the natural & organic beverage and food categories. As a seasoned brand marketer and innovation strategist, she has led several start-up companies from inception through launch and in-market success. She brings general management expertise combined with a passion and particular focus on lifestyle brand authenticity, consumer and trade marketing connectivity and product innovation development.

Gareth Bath

Managing Director - Rest of World

Gareth Bath

Managing Director - Rest of World

As MD, Gareth helps founders sharpen their commercial edge; giving them the freedom and tools to become the most effective leaders they can be as well as developing portfolio companies’ profile with key industry stakeholders. He's also responsible for ensuring that DV maintains its reputation for being at the forefront of industry trends and manages the day-to-day operations of the London-based team as they work to support the current portfolio, bring in exciting new brands and share their expertise globally.

Dan Shrimpton

Managing Director - Finance & Investments

Dan Shrimpton

Managing Director - Finance & Investments

Dan is an entrepreneur with over 10 years' experience at Innocent and Peppersmith. Having worked in both financial and marketing roles and set up his own business, his experience enables him to add value in areas ranging from financial planning and business modelling to trade marketing and sales strategy.

Evis Savvides

Operating Partner - North America

Evis Savvides

Operating Partner - North America

Evis comes to Distill Ventures with almost 20 years of leadership experience in the wine and spirits industry. In his role as operating partner, he will focus on planning and operations for all brands in North America and will work with the existing portfolio companies to accelerate the growth of these founder-led brands in both the spirits and non-alcoholic beverage categories.

Nicolas Proszenuck

Investment Director - North America

Nicolas Proszenuck

Investment Director - North America

Nicolas has financial and strategic advisory experience working with leading food and beverage companies in the U.S. and Europe across mergers and acquisitions, portfolio reviews and new ventures. At Distill Ventures, he will lead new investments to expand the spirits and non-alcoholic beverage portfolio in North America and work with existing portfolio companies to enable brands to scale and realize their full potential.

Ara Carvallo

Portfolio Director

Ara Carvallo

Portfolio Director

Ara Carvallo, an international brand strategist and serial entrepreneur, has over 20 years of experience in the spirits industry. Prior to joining DV, Ara launched many successful projects and consulted for both established spirits brands and startups around the world, using her finance and marketing expertise to help them attain global recognition and accelerate their businesses. She is also a trailblazer when it comes to sustainability, having founded the first-ever zero carbon bar show in the world and done pioneering research on the subject during her graduate studies.

Josh Wortman

Whisky Portfolio Director - North America

Josh Wortman

Whisky Portfolio Director - North America

Josh joins Distill Ventures with experience throughout the spirits industry working in beverage program and cocktail development, bar management and most recently on the distribution side with a portfolio of boutique, global spirits producers. He has partnered with founders on their sales and marketing strategies, brand development, training and education. As Commercial Director, he's excited to help the next generation of global spirits innovators find creative ways to generate growth.

Vishal Patel

Investment Director - Rest of World

Vishal Patel

Investment Director - Rest of World

Vishal has over 5 years’ experience advising companies on a wide range of investment, commercial and legal matters across VC, PE and M&A. At Distill Ventures, he leads new investments to expand the spirits and non-alcoholic beverage portfolio in Rest of World. He also works with existing portfolio companies to enable brands to scale and realise their full potential.

Zoe Decool

Brand and Marketing Director

Zoe Decool

Brand and Marketing Director

With experience in both creative agency and brand consultancy sides, Zoe has built a deep understanding of how brands work within culture. She’s been helping companies around the world develop great positioning, messaging, design, communications and content which resonate with what’s happening right now and drive commercial objectives. She brings expertise on how founder-led brands create successful growth and is excited to help entrepreneurs create the global drinks brands of the future.

Allie Warren

Head of Marketing

Allie Warren

Head of Marketing

Since 2017, Allie has curated and managed DV’s ongoing lineup of panels and speaking opportunities at some of the leading drinks industry events throughout the world, including Bar Convent Berlin, Bar Convent Brooklyn, Bevnet Live and regular sessions at the annual Tales of the Cocktail amounting to over 35 individual talks since starting the role in 2017. 

She also guides and implements DV’s global education programme, helping to reinforce the company’s position as a thought-leader across multiple categories. She creates an innovative calendar of forward-thinking content, including an ongoing series of widely read white papers that explore some of today’s key drinks trends and best practices, most recently focusing on the growth of non-alc and whisky innovation

Sophie Lecocq Saunders

E-Commerce Director

Sophie Lecocq Saunders

E-Commerce Director

Sophie works directly with brands to devise, implement and optimise eCommerce strategies for both brand-building and commercial objectives through the companies’ brand websites, Amazon and key eCommerce partners.
She identifies online retail best practice and emerging digital trends that can be adopted by the portfolio to deliver the best eCommerce experience for their customers. She also works closely with DV’s team of digital and data specialists to keep the portfolio at the forefront of online purchasing trends as well as support in the search for and continued investment in digitally native drinks brands.

Justin Lew

Consumer Marketing & Digital Director - North America

Justin Lew

Consumer Marketing & Digital Director - North America

Justin is an experienced brand marketer with a demonstrated history of delivering results through data driven strategies that focus on sound consumer and customer insights. He has honed his expertise in the beverage alcohol industry working within large corporate structures and start-up environments. At Distill Ventures, he partners with portfolio companies to better connect with the consumer; and develop integrated marketing programs that drive growth and increase brand value.

Charlie Steel

Whisky Portfolio Director - Rest of World

Charlie Steel

Whisky Portfolio Director - Rest of World

Charlie leads DV's ROW whiskey portfolio acceleration and whiskey category-leadership programming as he supports a group of distinct, scalable brands around the world, including Stauning, one of Europe’s standout new whiskies from Denmark and Starward, a distinctive Australian whisky exclusively matured in wine barrels. Additionally, he supports the company’s global search strategy as we continue to look for the most exciting founder-led whiskey brands to join DV's portfolio and gain access to the highest calibre support in the industry.

Jules-Robert Briant

Trade Marketing Director – North America

Jules-Robert Briant

Trade Marketing Director – North America

Jules comes to Distill Ventures with 10 years of experience leading full brand portfolio trade, customer and shopper marketing initiatives at Constellation Brands, Bacardi North America and most recently at Campari Group. At Distill Ventures, Jules leads the Trade Marketing advisory for portfolio companies, helping founders scale their businesses in North America.

Ed Mott

Data & Insight

Ed Mott

Data & Insight

Ed is an award-winning Marketing & Data Insight professional with experience of working both agency and client side. Ed’s talent for running global strategic research projects and turning big data into actionable insights has delivered dynamic growth for multiple Fortune500 businesses. At DV, Ed will support the team by helping the portfolio understand their in-market brand performance and using big data to unearth the next emerging trends and exciting brands.

Ilaria Leone

Head of Content and Digital Strategy

Ilaria Leone

Head of Content and Digital Strategy


Ilaria joins DV after spending over eight years working as a social media manager and creative content producer for e-commerce, arts and lifestyle brands.
Having previously worked with Made.com supporting the launch of the Italian market and innovative virtual community platforms, as well as the European expansion and the editorial content creation, Ilaria brings expertise on content localisation, production, management and strategy.
She will support the team by helping the portfolio convey their brand messaging on digital channels, driving conversions, audience engagement and increasing the overall digital brand awareness.

Chris Young

Portfolio Finance Manager

Chris Young

Portfolio Finance Manager

Chris joined Distill Ventures after working for a premium spirits distributor managing a portfolio of brands including Kraken Rum. He has worked across all aspects of finance and operations roles; this experience has given him deep understanding of how companies work and how to best prepare and guide them through rapid growth. At DV Chris helps the portfolio accelerate by advising best practice when producing a financial plan as well as analysing commercial performance.

Holly Browne

Search & Insight Manager

Holly Browne

Search & Insight Manager

Holly started her career at Tesco before joining a global research organisation specialising in food and drink retail. There, she worked on a wide range of insight projects for the world’s leading retailers and FMCGs, in fields such as e-commerce and digital, shopper missions, and seasonal events. Her experience gives her a great understanding of changing consumer trends. As Senior Search Exec at Distill Ventures, Holly’s focus will be to find the best new founder-led brands for potential DV investment.

Ilaria Pellegrini

Trade Marketing Executive

Ilaria Pellegrini

Trade Marketing Executive

Ilaria started her career in the drinks industry right after graduating college, spending around 2 years in the marketing department of two global spirits companies, focusing on luxury brands first and aperitifs later, both on a country and regional level. She developed expertise with a 360 degrees approach to brand touch-points and brings in strong passion for the industry. As Trade Marketing Executive, Ilaria will help the portfolio accelerate their growth in the on, off and digital trade.

Alison Griggs

Office Manager

Alison Griggs

Office Manager

Alison brings 6+ years of experience in the drinks industry including years at Bacardi Global Brands, as well as an extensive background in the entertainment and marketing sectors. With a focus on team culture & wellness as well as sustainability and eco-friendly brands, Alison supports the DV global office in every way; enabling our teams to find the best new founder-led brands.

Franziska Werner

Internal Finance Manager

Franziska Werner

Internal Finance Manager

Fran comes to Distill Ventures with four years of experience working for start-ups. She has worked across all aspects of finance with a background in banking, music and entertainment. In her work managing DV’s internal finances, she uses her extensive experience in commercial finance, financial reporting, forecasting, analysis and business operations to ensure accurate reporting to internal as well as external stakeholders.

Brad Wright

Portfolio Finance Manager - North America

Brad Wright

Portfolio Finance Manager - North America

Brad joins Distill Ventures with over 10 years of experience working for both a global industry-leading energy drink company, as well as a start-up canned wine company. Having worked in both finance and operations roles, he has unlocked a keen understanding of how to properly plan and prepare for scalability. At DV Brad helps the North America portfolio accelerate by advising best practice when producing a financial plan as well as analyzing commercial performance.

Raquel Royers

DIgital Activation Manager - North America

Raquel Royers

DIgital Activation Manager - North America

Raquel joins Distill Ventures after spending six years in the wine industry focused on digital marketing, social media strategy, influencer marketing and DTC e-comm. Prior to her stint in wine she spent time on the agency side focused on content marketing for a variety of industries after first starting out as a crime reporter (yes, she has many stories to tell!). As a past journalist and seasoned marketer she thrives on helping brands tell their most authentic stories and connecting with their customers in the digital space. At Distill Ventures, Raquel focuses on helping our portfolio of brands drive growth of eCommerce sales in the US, support the development and execution of digital marketing plans and stay up to date on and drive the best digital marketing practices across the portfolio.