Winch Design studio in the UK has announced that Aino-Leena Grapin has been appointed chief executive officer. David Robinson reports.

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L-R: Andrew Winch, Aino-Leena Grapin, Clive Beharrell

In a number of top management changes at the Winch Design studio in the UK, Aino-Leena Grapin has been appointed chief executive officer. Andrew Winch has moved into the position of creative director and founder.

Winch Design, one of the world’s leading design studios, says that the appointment of a new CEO is “part of the ongoing strategy to expand its leadership team”.

Grapin has nearly 20 years’ experience in leading and growing businesses in creative industries. She was formerly managing director at Paddle8 & Auctionata, a leading online auction house. Grapin set up the company’s European operations.

New team

Grapin holds an MBA from INSEAD, having started her career as a strategy consultant with Bain & Company, before spending nearly a decade at Christie’s in a variety of strategic and operational roles: more recently as international business director, responsible for Russian Art.

Within Winch Design, Grapin will work closely with both Andrew Winch and the recently appointed non-executive chairman, Clive Beharrell.

Beharrell also brings considerable experience as chairman of over 10 businesses across a variety of sectors, from Scott Dunn to Fat Face.

In addition, Beharrell has particular skills in advising founder-driven businesses on achieving a secure and sustainable management structure.

Both Grapin and Beharrell have been purposefully recruited from outside the superyacht and private aviation industries, to provide a fresh perspective and high-level business experience from other relevant sectors.

Andrew Winch has been at the helm of the firm and has been the driving force creatively for the last 30 years. Commenting on the appointments, he says: “I am delighted to have Clive and Aino on board.

“This marks a really exciting time for the business as we bring such talented and highly regarded individuals into our team. I know that together we will ensure the long term success of the company,” he concludes.