Global marketing director Paddy Power
Early on, Christian Woolfenden was inspired by the old man who lived next door. As they fed his chickens, his neighbour would provide Woolfenden with tit bits of entrepreneurialism, teaching Woolfenden that “when you put your mind to things you really can do anything.” Woolfenden realised that if he were to succeed in business, he was going to have to know finance, so he applied for graduate schemes with banks. This is how Woolfenden ended up at Procter & Gamble; it was only when he was awaiting interview that he realised they weren’t a bank. “RBS, PwC, HSBC...I thought P &G must be one too.” Woolfenden convinced them of his desire to work there. After eight years with the company he moved to Bacardi where he was the global brand director, responsible for marketing and product innovation in over 20 markets worldwide. Woolfenden spend four years at Bacardi before taking the reins at bookmaker Paddy Power. A change of approach and internal reorganisation have paid dividends with his newly created team driving Paddy Power forward in market share, turnover and brand strength. He has developed a reputation for pushing boundaries and has made and seized marketing opportunities across the industry. In 2013, Paddy Power backed a campaign addressing homophobia in football, sending footballers a pair of rainbow colour laces to wear if they supported a change in attitudes.