Ian was born and raised in New York City, and attended Duke University, graduating with a BA in History, with a concentration in Chinese language. Ian moved permanently to China in 1995 to take up a career in the wines and spirits business with Seagram. In 1999 Ian co-founded Summergate, an importer, marketer, and national China distributor of wine, with a mission to build the China market for imported wines over the coming decades. Today Summergate is a leading drinks company in China by any measure – size, reputation, quality, knowledge, and professionalism. Ian has presented on China at conferences in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, Bordeaux, London, and New York, and for seventeen years has been working closely with leading drinks brands building their markets in China. In 2014 Ian sold his business to Woolworths of Australia, remaining on the board of Summergate and acting as Director of Business Development, East Asia, for Woolworths.