Richard spent the first 19 years of his working life in the City, including 13 years at Credit Suisse and then 2 years at Rothchilds, where, in both institutions, he ran the Retail Sector M&A teams across Europe. In 2006 he returned to Yorkshire and joined the family firm, then known as WaggFoods, as MD. Richard helped drive the development of a more premium positioning for the business with a move into pet treats and the creation of a new natural brand in 2008, Harringtons. Harringtons is now the biggest dry dog food brand in the UK. It is positioned as a natural pet food using local products, no artificial colouring and its production is carbon negative – a first for UK pet food. Some 5 years ago a US based equity investor specialising in consumer foods, L Catterton, invested in the company. During this period the business spent some £45m on new capital projects, including building a wet dog plant facility in Wales, as well as spending an equivalent amount on driving its two main brands. The Company also changed its name to Inspired Pet Nutrition (IPN).
Harringtons remains the fastest growing pet food of scale in the UK, moving into treats, wet dog, dry cat and wet cat foods. Wagg remains the largest dry dog food brand by volume in the UK. Sales reached £110m in 2020 and IPN are forecasting strong growth in 2021 and beyond. Aside from his interest in IPN, Richard has invested in multiple companies, mainly with a digital bias, but also in areas like Gin and alternative sources of Protein production.