Heavy on the swagger and light on the damns given, Oscar is Office Alpha, and he knows it. Despite smelling like a mongrel, Oscar has nearly all the staff wrapped round his little paws, hopping on laps as and when he chooses. It is said that most of his power stems from his eyes, the rest from his sausage-like body.
Life in Oscar’s shadow ain’t easy, but Alfie has one major asset—a tight relationship with the CEO, with whom he’s often out walking, jogging and chasing squirrels.
CEO Joe is the brains and energy behind it all. He’s always had a keen eye for business, starting his first successful company at 16, and a passion for all things mechanical. Despite beginning his career as a photographer, his side project selling watches soon took centre stage. Joe’s hands-on with nearly every aspect in the business, from early hours to late at night, and his door is always open. Rumour has it Joe owns more shoes than his wife and more turtlenecks than the late Steve Jobs.
Company Secretary and Chairman Frank is the co-owner of Xupes. Trained as an accountant, Frank takes a central role in company finances, but his keener interest lies in antiques, where he has over 30 years of experience. Frank knows more about skiing than most Mountain Rangers and claims to have taught Oscar everything.
Owen is our Office Manager and Head of Creative. Despite knocking a valuable antique off a shelf during his interview, he was taken on for his promising photography skills. Today, he’s the brain behind all our design, from emails to billboards. He works closely with all departments and writes about his favourite watches for our magazine. Owen’s usually found in our studio sporting a checked shirt, horn rims and an impressive beard. Equally important, Owen runs the office five-a-side football.
Sam joined Xupes as PA to both directors and evolved into one of our Office Managers, heading up administration and keeping the team in check. She brings a professional approach honed over years working in the city for investment management companies and a leading high street bank. As well as doubling as a second mother for all, Sam is super positive and is almost always smiling.
Matthew is our Sales Manager for watches and jewellery. More often than not he’s the amiable voice on the other end of your watch inquiries. He has built up an excellent CV in the industry, working for a number of well-known high street retailers, and is a qualified gemmologist. But more impressively, he plays guitar and piano to first-degree level. He has been overheard talking with Rebecca and Owen about starting a Xupes band.
Reece is Head of Handbags and Accessories, a department he built almost single-handedly. His experience lies in photography, styling and creative direction, working with brands such as British Vogue, Elle magazine, All Saints and Levis, which is why he’s long been Owen’s right-hand man behind the lens. As well as having a keen eye for style, Reece is the go-to man for tips on Dubai and London’s fine-dining hotspots.
Antiques Manager Rowena heads up the curating of our art and antiques collection. With a Master’s Degree in Art and Archaeology, Rowena’s our number one history of art expert. When not at Xupes or roaming the halls of art and design shows, which she sometimes covers for Xupes magazine, she can usually be found in one of London’s prosecco brunch hotspots.
Mohammed joined us in January 2017 as our Workshop Manager, overseeing our watchmaking and servicing. He previously worked in Switzerland and Dubai developing after-sales service centres for big top Swiss watch and jewellery brands. As well as bringing extensive watch knowledge, Mohammed is passionate about antiques and unusual mechanical objects, rarely missing a chance to visit an antiques fair.
Michael is our Head of Purchasing for our watches and jewellery departments. As a trained gemmologist who has spent the last 28 years in the luxury industry in South Africa, USA and England, Michael brings a wealth of experience to a mostly young team. He has had the privilege of selling watches and jewellery to celebrities and stars and has also worked for David Morris and the Wonder Room in Selfridges. Michael is a rare species as he’s one of the world’s few South African vegetarians.
Rebecca is our Marketing Manager, running CRM, SEO and PPC campaigns and acting as our friendly face at events. She learnt the ropes at media agency OMD in London, where she worked with major clients including Citroen, Waterstones and SSE. Rebecca is the only person you’ve ever met who’s adopted two dogs from Cyprus and reached grade eight on the oboe.
Our Accounts Manager Francky runs everything financial, from sales to wages, making sure all ends meet. She’s known for occasionally putting our directors in line or bidding her goodbyes with adorable phrases such as “toodlie-doo”. Married to our accountant Mark, Francky has five children, one dog, thirty fish and voluminous hair.
Our Receptionist, Francesca, is the beaming face that greets you at our front door. She’s primarily involved in admin but is also in charge of biscuits, a role that carries a high level of gravity within the office. Also, as a winner of Miss Hertfordshire and Miss England Top Model, she models for all our website, billboard and magazine shoots. Francesca owns five cats and does creative make-up for film and theatre.
Hayley started her Xupes life as a social media assistant but has been increasingly involved with helping to manage the jewellery department and is training with the British Jewellers’ Association in her spare time. She is known as a can-do kind of girl and gets stuck into many areas of the business. Hayley is one of few who don’t give in to Oscar’s charms.
Often referred to as Danger or 00-Dizzle, Dan is our resident yes man and all-rounder, working primarily in sales and also running the popular Xupes Watches Instagram account. Before Xupes, Dan was a sergeant in the Air Cadets and he learnt to fly a plane before he drove a car. Recently Dan has been on a bit of a health kick, having cut down from nine sugars in his coffee to just two and he now even uses Hovis Best of Both in his sandwiches.
Sorcha is second in command in the handbags department where she mixes buying, selling, listing and social media with a healthy dose of admin. Her name, which derives from a Gaelic word meaning “brightness”, makes her an unfortunate victim of client misnaming, often being referred to as “Porsha”, “Sasha”, “Scorcher”, “Sara” and even, remarkably, “Sophie”. Outside of the office she dabbles in acting and recently starred alongside Brad Pitt in Allied.
Yvette is an assistant in our antiques department and is known to double as Frank’s personal IT support. Her experience and skills lie in product design and she has worked as a watch designer for a handful of high street fashion brands. Among Yvette’s hobbies that we actively encourage is baking, and she often spices up an office morning with her pastries. Despite bringing treats, Oscar rarely pays any attention to her pleas for his love and appreciation.
Myles is our dispatch coordinator, which means he works closely with the sales team, liaises with couriers and plays a hand in stock control. A keen music fan, rock in particular, Myles is the biggest contributor of 50s tunes to the office playlist and his hairstyle would make Johnny Cash proud.
Alex’s role blends website listing, watch buying, stock managing and meme-of-the-day picking. Although it all sounds relatively straightforward, his memes rarely cut the mustard. Jokes aside, Alex’s professional training has been in watches and jewellery and he was a private watch trader for four years before joining Xupes. Alex is one of few South Africans with an Essex accent.
Joe is our resident watchmaker. He brings a trove of experience, having attended Watchmaking College in London and later Neuchâtel, the Swiss epicentre of watchmaking, and then notched up decades working for a number of the world’s leading watch brands. Joe is a friendly fellow and a keen fisherman in his spare time.
Hugh is our editor and the main contributor to our magazine. He’s by far the remotest member of our team as he’s currently living in South America. When at the office, Hugh is known for making imaginative lunches and for being Oscar’s bae, a pill that many find hard to swallow. He’s also currently studying an MA in Translation Studies.
Alice is our Photography Assistant, taking over from Owen on the lion’s share of product photography and playing a hand in creative styling for the magazine. She’s a passionate snapper specialised in luxury accessories and fashion. It is said that Alice’s calls for Oscar can be heard from her hometown, Birmingham.
Morgan is a long-serving Production and Design Assistant. His skills lie in visual editing and graphic design, which means he’s Owen’s backstop and Sam’s technical support. His creative package includes a hefty contribution to the office playlist and inventive threads. While this might make him sound borderline cool, eyebrows have been raised at his immoderate enthusiasm for Star Wars.
Liam is an Assistant Visual Editor and Designer. He works in tandem with Morgan under Owen’s watch, but unlike Morgan he has a very impressive pencil wrap that he inherited from his grandfather. Liam had previously worked for Xupes and re-joined us after three years studying for a degree in Graphic Design.
Calum came on-board as an Accounts Assistant with the primary task of easing the load on Francky. He’s involved in all areas of accounting and a number of aspects of administration. Before Xupes, Calum spent two years working overseas in Turkey, Greece, France and Andorra, with Europe’s biggest active holiday company.