About Us

The origins of Fox can be traced back to Dublin in 1881 when James J. Fox took over the tobacconist’s business where he had previously been employed as manager. The Irish retail business survives to this day, and is still trading from the original shop at 119 Grafton Street.


Fox’s cigar retail business expanded into London in 1946, and in 1992 acquired the Robert Lewis shop, which dates back to 1787. The cigar shop, now one of the best known in the world, is located at 19 St. James Street, and the business also runs the tobacco concessions in both Harrods and Selfridges.

Under the stewardship of Freddie Fox who had established a successful importing and distribution business in Ireland, a similar business, A H Copp Limited in Jersey, was acquired in 1968, and in 1974, the sales and distribution operation expanded into in Guernsey. In 1976, A H Copp Limited changed its name to JJ Fox International Limited.

1985 saw the Fox Group expand into the confectionery business, through the acquisition of Wilkinson’s Confectionery Limited and later with the purchase of A J Mauger Agencies in 1988. This growth helped the firm to act as both agents and distributors for a wide range of internationally known brands, thus becoming the sole representative in the grocery and supermarket sector for many of our principals. The trading business was strengthened by the successful development of a vending division through the acquisitions of Channel Islands Vending, Vendworks Holdings Limited and Guernsey Vending Limited. More recently further diversification has been achieved through the acquisition of Pack and Wrap in Jersey and A1 Distributors Limited in Guernsey to create a pan-island division supplying packaging, catering and hygiene products into the Islands’ hospitality and catering industry.

As the trading business in the Channel Islands grew, a number of investments in office and warehousing projects both in the UK, Jersey and Guernsey were progressed. In 1999, the current Jersey head office and distribution centre at Rue des Pres, was built and is occupied by the business to this day.


As the varied distribution, property and retail interests of the Fox Group grew over time it became impractical to manage them under a single Board, so the decision was taken in 2003 to allow the interests to develop under their own, more focused, management teams. A reorganisation of the group took place incorporating JJ Fox (St James’s) Limited to manage and develop the UK cigar retail business, Fox International Property Holdings Limited the property investments and JJ Fox Trading Limited, all of the Fox Group’s Channel Island trading businesses. All are wholly owned by the original company, JJ Fox International Limited.

The Board of JJ Fox International Limited

(The “Holding Company” of the Fox Group)

Mike Ormsby

Non-Executive Chairman

Joined Fox in 1982, as the Sales and Marketing Director of the Fox Trading business, until 2004 when he retired and became its non-executive Chairman. He has also been a Director of the main Board of JJ Fox International Limited for much of that time. Mike has some 42 years experience in the tobacco business, firstly with Rothmans in the UK, and then the Channel Islands before joining Fox where he transformed the market share of our tobacco brands, and therefore the profitability of our Trading business, in the market.

Stuart Fox

Group Managing Director

Graduated from Trinity College Dublin with a B.A. (hons.) Degree in Economics and Geography in 1994, before joining the Citicorp Group in Dublin later that year. Stuart worked in Agency Treasury Management gaining promotion to manager in 1998 specialising in foreign exchange hedging. He left the bank later that year and moved to Jersey where he joined JJ Fox International Limited, becoming its company secretary in 2000, a Director of the Board in 2001, and it’s Group Managing Director in 2007. He chairs the boards of all the subsidiary companies in the Fox Group.

Robert Fox

Non-Executive Director

Graduated from Trinity College Dublin with a B.A. (hons.) Degree in Economics and Geography in 1996 and completed a part time International Executive MBA at the Michael Smurfit School of Business in 1997. After a brief IT project with Anderson Consulting Rob joined TDL Distributors Limited, part of the Fox family business in Ireland, in 1997. He was appointed to the Board of that business in 2002 and became its Managing Director in 2007, and was appointed to the Board of JJ Fox International Limited as a Director in the same year. Rob plays important roles in the family’s retail cigar interests in Dublin and London, and sits on the management team and Boards of the retail companies in both jurisdictions.

Gary Martin

Group Finance and Operations Director

Gary is a qualified Irish Chartered Accountant and holds a MBA. He originally worked for Coopers & Lybrand (now PWC) in audit and later management consultancy. After leaving PWC he worked for diverse family interests in various capacities as a Management Consultant. His association with the Fox Group dates to 1990 when he was seconded as Financial Controller and has worked on several projects for the Group since then.