Background | People | Contact us
- Auctionair came out of an experimental project for an airline in 2001, aiming to provide entertainment and retail opportunities to passengers whilst in flight.
- After various new trials throughout 2002 the business was launched in July 2003.
- Auctionair has now established a new kind of marketplace, bringing together a special sort of customer with carefully selected suppliers; facilitated by innovative media owners.
- Auctionair gains customers in the same way as a direct mail business, by building a base of customers who become regular buyers.
- The company enjoys over 40% repeat business from its customers and has already carried out nearly half a million profitable transactions with them.
- Auctionair is EIS registered and funded by private investors.
Who are the directors?
Albert Scardino (Chairman)
Albert, a journalist and media investor, has worked in news and newspapers from linotype to new media. His journalism has been part of The New York Times, The Guardian, Oxford Analytica, the BBC and Sky News. He was a founder and the editor of a group of weeklies in the US where he won a Pulitzer Prize. He has taught and lectured widely on journalism, media and politics. He served as Press Secretary to the Mayor of New York and as an adviser to the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission. In the charity world, he has been active in the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Institute for Philanthropy and a number of educational institutions. He has chaired Auctionair since its launch.
Duncan Hilleary (Chief Executive)
Prior to launching Auctionair, Duncan had spent 15 years in the in-flight media business. He founded Spafax Airline Network in 1985 and was the Chief Executive until 1998. He expanded the company to serve 40 airlines from 6 offices around the world, achieving an annual billing turnover of US$100m. Duncan left Spafax after selling his shareholding in the company. The company is now owned by WPP.
Adrian Cox (Non-executive Director)
Adrian was until recently Executive President and General Manager of Ask.com Europe. He joined Auctionair as a non-executive director in 2006. Before joining Ask Jeeves as it was then known, Adrian held executive marketing positions at Cadbury Schweppes and St Ivel. Ask.com is now a division of IAC Search & Media.
Antonio Soler (Non Executive Director)
Antonio Soler joined the board in June 2007. With degrees from Harvard College and INSEAD, he has worked in finance as an M&A specialist at Merrill Lynch and in technology as a co-founder of Skillvest Ltd., a software company he helped grow, shrink and then sell during dotcom 1. He was later named as a Global Strategist in the office of the Chairman of Samsung in South Korea. He currently sits as a Non-Executive on four company boards, including technology companies in France and the UK.
Who are the management team?
Alec Shaw Stewart (Director of e-Commerce)
Alec is a software, IT and web development professional. Between 1985 and 1996 he worked as a analyst-programmer for Rolls Royce PLC, Morgan Grenfell, BP, Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank, Raytheon Group. In 1996 he worked for Venus Internet for 2 years before branching out as an independent web developer in 1998. Alec built the original Auctionair web site and is responsible for e-business and online marketing and has been with the company since 2001.
Phil Kempson (Customer Relationship Manager)
Phil was a dedicated call centre manager who joined from Vodafone before the first auction in 2001. Prior to Vodafone, Phil had spent three years as Customer Service Manager and later Operations Manager for the recruitment company Reed Direct. Before joining Reed, he had spent 3 years in customer service with Comtel, initially in Leeds and subsequently in Oxford. Phil holds an engineering degree from the University of Leeds.
Jill Crawley (Customer services Manager)
Jill joined the company at its inception from Sitel UK where she had been Telemarketing Supervisor for 3 years. Jill has either personally completed or overseen the sale of all 6,000 winning bids that have been made, including managing all fulfillment for each winning customer. As a result she knows many key customers well.