The Power List | Legends | William Asprey, Chairman, William & Son

Last month, we revealed the names of the 50 Most Influential People in British Luxury on the inaugural Walpole Power List. Today, we continue our focus on the ‘Legends’ on the list, with a profile on William Asprey, Chairman of William & Son, Mayfair’s go-to luxury destination for Town & Country living.

William Asprey is the seventh generation of the Asprey family to specialise in the sale of luxury goods. In 1999, William founded William & Son, a veritable cornucopia of predominantly British-made luxury merchandise, from exclusive watch brands, handcrafted jewellery, infinitely useful small leather goods and luggage to luxurious leather clad board games and sterling silver ornaments.

What has been the defining moment of your career?

I think this has to be the moment when – having left the family business after 10 years, and going on my first overseas sales trip – I came back with good orders and support from my customers. This removed the doubts that one always has with a new business and gave me the confidence and boost that was needed to double my efforts as I then had proof that it was going to work.

What are the most important changes you’ve seen in the sector?

The changes in design technology have been incredible: the way that clients and workshops have embraced these has been so fast and the improvements in quality of presentation have been extraordinary. Other important changes have come with technology, whether it be in printers, soldering machines, cutting machines… The ability to cost a project more accurately has been a huge help, as technology enables us to be much more precise.

Another major change is everyone’s awareness of their responsibility for the environment, ethical sourcing and general sustainability.  This will become increasingly important in the future and should be influencing our decisions now.

www.williamandson.com

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