An accountant and professional tennis player turned businessman. Amir Mansoor is a pioneering entrepreneur who has made Lily International one of the leading businesses in the Maldives. He holds advanced academic credentials on several management programs including a higher diploma in Directorship from Singapore Management University. With the leadership of Amir, today, Grape Expectations stand with integrity and dedication in meeting the needs of its valued stakeholders.
Stefano Barbieri, who is our director, is what we like to call, ‘a jack of all trades’. He is involved in every department, especially sales, marketing and product sourcing. His ‘2-year contract’ back in the 90s eventually landed him in the distribution business in Male and 2015 marks his 21st year in the Maldives F&B market. Stefano is a chef by trade and his experience in F&B is truly unparalleled.
Ian Atkinson heads our Sales & Marketing department and arrived in early 2008 to develop a South African wine portfolio. He has since been with us through the entire expansion of the company to what is known today as ‘Grape Expectations’. He manages stock and oversees sales, operations, customer relations and marketing diligently.
General Manager, Fuad Salim, is a 30+ year’s veteran in the hospitality industry and started his career as trainee with Grand Hyatt Singapore in 1980 after transferring to Grand Hyatt Melbourne in 1988. Later in his career; Fuad had worked for the Hilton Worldwide, Peppers Hotels/Resorts, Six Senses Spas & Resorts as director of food & beverage. His career spans in food and beverage had taken him to countries in Middle East, S E Asia, China and Australia. After completion of his HR/Business studies at Swinburne University Melbourne in 2008; he embarked in a career change into training and development. In 2011 he went back into food and beverage sector; and his last employment prior moving to Maldives was the pre-opening of 4000 rooms The Sands Cotai Macao comprising of Conrad, Sheraton and Holiday Inn.
LuAndre Volschenk is currently Sommelier and Sales Manager. He is an accredited sommelier through the globally recognized Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET), and the Cape Wine Academy. LuAndre has a strong background in hospitality, with over five years of experience at some of the leading private country clubs in the United States, such as the Glen Oaks Country Club in New York, the Palm Beach Country Club in Florida and the Philadelphia Country Club in Pennsylvania. Prior to joining Grape Expectations, he was the Food and Beverage Service Manager at the Lagoon Beach Hotel and Spa, where he developed the overall wine program. LuAndre is a graduate from the IMM Graduate School of Marketing, and started his career in the media business, as an Account Executive at Media24. He is also a recognized artist – his commissioned work can be seen in homes in South Africa and the United States.
Our very own Mixologist & Cigar Aficionado, Don Sheehan, joined in November 2015, and manages our beverage and tobacco portfolios, along with his training programs on both. Don has been involved in the hospitality industry for more than 18 years, starting in food but finding his passion in beverages and well-run bars. For the last 8 years, Don has exclusively consulted to some of the top restaurants, bar and hotels in South Africa focusing on menu development, professional training programs, implementation, ergonomics and bar design. Besides working with venues, Don has also worked on a host of events and activations, including represented South Africa at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, both in 2009 and 2010. He has had the pleasure of working with many reputable brands such as Monin, Giffard, Belvedere, Cîroc, Grey Goose, Absolut, Tanqueray, Bombay Sapphire, Beef Eater, Jameson, Black Bottle as well as most of the Pernod Ricard and Diageo deluxe portfolios.
Besides our Sommelier and Sales teams we have an extremely competent and professional team of staff exceeding 20 in number.