Meet the Bijou Wine Team

Chris Ellis

Managing Director

Chris Ellis founded Bijou Wine in 2013 after twenty-five years in the wine industry. Previously he has worked as Export Director for a large French wine producer and was a founder shareholder of Western Wines. He has also consulted to a number of vineyards, wine producers, distributors and retailers. Chris was at the forefront of the retail wine revolution and has been heavily involved in both production and sales and marketing. He created, sourced and developed brands such as Kumala and Isla Negra and was the first person to bring in brands such as Cono Sur to the European Market.

Edward Vellacott

International Sales Executive

English by birth, Edward was brought up in the South of France from the age of nine.  After completing his French Baccalaureate he returned to the UK to study Management and Spanish at the University of Leeds, the highlight of which was spending a year working in the export division of a Spanish winery in Madrid.  Edward’s trustworthy personality allied with his interpersonal and communication skills continuously help him build strong cross-cultural relationships.  He has WSET Level 3 and will shortly complete the Diploma course.

Imogen Atkins

Sales and Marketing Executive

Imogen Atkins is a keen linguist with a particular passion for building relationships with people from a variety of different cultures and backgrounds. Her enthusiasm for wine began during her third year of university, which was spent abroad in Spain completing a marketing and customer relationship management internship in a bodega in La Rioja. She then went on to do a sales work placement in a winery in Chateauneuf-du-Pape, perfecting her French and increasing her knowledge of French wine. Since graduating from the University of Leeds with a degree in French and Spanish, she has worked in a variety of wine merchants and has explored some of the world’s finest wine regions in New Zealand, Chile, Uruguay and Argentina on a 6-month travelling trip. She is currently taking WSET Level 3.

Claudia Bastiaensen

Regional Export Manager

Claudia is native Dutch and has international work experience in both the drinks industry and luxury goods. She developed her olfactory skills while working at perfume houses such as Dior. She then moved to the drinks business and worked for Heineken and Vranken-Pommery in different sales and marketing roles. Claudia’s passion for wine and fluency in the French language, comes from her 7-year stay in Paris. Claudia  is completing the WSET Diploma and has her own wine tasting business.

Sasha Howard

Portfolio Consultant

Sasha is our Portfolio Consultant, she is a Mandarin speaker living in London but has lived in China on and off since 2008. After graduating from university with a degree in Chinese language and culture she embarked on a career which fed her interest in the growing relationship between the UK and China.

Her passions are writing travel articles for Chinese publications and discovering new culinary hot spots in London.

The Winemakers

Christophe Laffitte

Côtes de Gascogne

Gilles Cantons

Cabrières Languedoc

Luc Flache


Phillippe Tolleret

Côtes du Luberon

Yann Soulairac

Costières de Nîmes