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Published:  23 July, 2008

Richard Halstead, corporate development manager for Virgin Wines since August 2001, is leaving to become managing director of Wine Intelligence, a market research organisation specialising in the wine industry. Halstead will continue to work on a consultancy basis with Virgin Wines and other companies within the Virgin Group on developing customer acquisition strategy. He has also joined Virgin Wines' Advisory Board. As managing director of Wine Intelligence Halstead will oversee large client research projects and work on developing the business. Rowan Gormley, chief executive officer of Virgin Wines, said: Richard has been a valued member of the Virgin Wines management team and we are sorry to see him go. With his help over the past year we have managed to cut our customer acquisition costs in half and yet at the same time we have increased our monthly rate of customer recruitment by more than 100%. I am very happy that Richard has agreed to continue working with Virgin Wines on a consultancy basis,' added Gormley, and that other Virgin Group companies are now seeking out his services.' The Virgin Wines corporate development role will now be taken by Sarah McDonald, previously corporate sales manager at Virgin Wines.