Born in Livingstone, Zambia in 1943 and educated in Cape Town, South Africa, before being transferred to London in 1977.
Spent over 50 years in business, starting in the grocery trade before moving into the liquor industry and, in latter years, becoming a Consultant, Mentor and a Non-Executive Director of a variety of companies.
A large part of my career has been working internationally, building and creating brands and also identifying and employing people who have gone onto Make Your Mark.
Together with my partner and friend, Tom Jago, launched Le Piat D'Or, Malibu, The Classic Malts, Johnnie Walker Blue Label and Chivas Regal 18 amongst others. Responsible for the growth of Baileys in its early years, a brand invented by Tom - which failed in research and he thus hid the research - this would certainly not happen today, "research is after all, an aid to judgement, not a substitute for judgement".
I have spent the last 50 years in business building Brands and People and now in my semi-retirement, I focus on a few specific areas: entrepreneurial activities, mentoring, writing and philanthropy.
A unique take on the wisdom of quotes. Entertaining and makes you think.
James has spent his career observing, thinking and summing things up succinctly. these quotes provide moments to reflect and be guided by someone who has seen around a few of the bends in the road ahead.
James's ability to draw a quote or a one-liner to sum up a 'situation' - tricky, funny or even just routine - has always been a feature of his management and leadership. This unique, spontaneous communication style provides inspiration to all who deal with him.
I am privileged and proud to have known James for more than 60 years. He has always had an excellent grasp on and insight into what it takes to succeed in one's business life. This book is a visionary tribute to his acute observations, and the quotes and his comments provide a timely reminder of how to survive the challenges of our post-pandemic world.
Having known James Espey for over 25 years, I have seen at first hand his endless enthusiasm and many achievements in business. Make Your Mark brings together all his experiences gained in a long and very successful career, which will benefit many in an easy-to-read manner.