Douglas Stafford celebrates 25 years in style

Time 8:45 am, August 19, 2014

HAN_7451 - Copy-001 - CopyLEADING car manufacturers and dealer groups have helped mystery shopping and performance improvement company, Douglas Stafford, celebrate its 25th anniversary.

Senior figures from Hyundai, Renault UK, Kia UK, Toyota, Scania, Hendy Group and Vertu Motors were just some of the guests at the company’s spectacular celebrations at the south coast’s iconic Spinnaker Tower.

Attendees were able to enjoy food and drink, live music from The Vibe, magic tricks from international magician Aaron Isted, a fun photobooth and a DJ.

Douglas Stafford was founded by current chief executive, Nigel Cook, in 1989 and now employs more than 120 people at its head office based at Lakeside North Harbour, Portsmouth.

In the late 1980s, Cook previously worked in the motor industry and wanted to test the levels of customer service his staff were providing – and improve it. But at the time, there were no companies that could do that, so he decided to set up his own.

In the early years, Douglas Stafford had offices in Northampton and the Isle of Wight, before relocating its head office to bigger offices in Portsmouth, where the company has been for ten years.

Now, Douglas Stafford is the market leader for video mystery shopping in the UK, and also provides bespoke customer experience programmes through telephone mystery shopping, online mystery shopping and report-based mystery shopping for a high percentage of the UK’s leading automotive dealer groups and manufacturers.

During the daytime on Friday and Saturday last week, clients and Douglas Stafford team members took to the water on board the 40ft Beneteau yacht, Lady Diane for a special sailing experience. And many thrill-seeking guests were also able to enjoy exhilarating blasts in the Solent on a high-powered RIB.

James Batchelor's avatar

James – or Batch as he’s known – started at Car Dealer in 2010, first as the work experience boy, eventually becoming editor in 2013. He worked for Auto Express as editor-at-large and was the face of Carbuyer’s YouTube reviews. In 2020, he went freelance and now writes for a number of national titles and contributes regularly to Car Dealer. In October 2021 he became Car Dealer's associate editor.

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