About Us

Welcome to Thirsty Camel. We pride ourselves on being a leading premium importer and distributor of exceptional spirits, liqueurs and mixers. We source quality products, both locally and from across the globe, and bring them home for New Zealanders to enjoy and savour.

Our Story

Thirsty Camel began in 2004, and since then has firmly established itself as the market leader, representing many of the world’s finest and most exciting brands.

No other New Zealand importer is able to match the range and quality of our brand portfolio, which has been built over many years through strong relationships with suppliers, meaning we can offer our customers a full and seamless supply service.

Our complete complementary portfolio of premium brands at Thirsty Camel ranges from major international suppliers to craft producers. We're dedicated to creating an environment where these brands can be given the focus and brand building support required to succeed.

Meet the team

Titch Hay

Owner/CEO
titch@thirstycamel.co.nz

Titch spent years in a global role with the Francoli company, based in the UK and Italy, discovering premium brands and working with some of the biggest names in the industry. Titch has a strong network and deep knowledge of the premium spirits, liqueurs and mixers sector. A firm believer in empowering staff, Titch has always chosen to hire the very best people, give them the tools they need and support them to flourish. As a result, we’ve been able to attract an incredible team who take truly excellent care of our customers.


Scott Fairbairn

COO
scott@thirstycamel.co.nz

Scott’s unique skillset makes him a small-batch, limited edition member of the team. He’s worked in senior roles within the FMCG, sporting, retail and drinks sectors overseas and in NZ, and his years with Lion Nathan, Magner’s and Pernod gave him incredible insight. He’s a community-minded family man who spends his spare time as a cub leader, chair of his kids’ school board, director of Team Skoda Racing and trustee of the Velodrome in Cambridge. If you’re wondering how he finds the energy for all this… apparently it’s one long black & cream after another.


Marie Batty

Finance Manager
marie@thirstycamel.co.nz

Marie has distilled her many talents into 3 words: driven, dynamic and dedicated. An experienced financial analyst and accountant, she honed her skills at Coca-Cola Amatil, Constellation Brands, Carter Holt Harvey and abroad. As the analytical and numerical brain on the team, she keeps us all nicely organised with an impressive array of spreadsheets and probably has her whole family embedded in Excel too. Marie loves adventure sports and the only thing she enjoys more than skiing is the refreshing gin and Fever-Tree tonic she treats herself with afterwards.


Lorin Keech

National Key Accounts
lorin@thirstycamel.co.nz

With 25 years instilled in the industry, Lorin’s navigated his long career with the belief that “the man at the top of the mountain did not fall there.” and we love that he always goes the extra mile for our customers. Lorin’s currently playing to a handicap of 18 and keeps chasing his elusive second hole-in-one – something he’ll no doubt celebrate with a signature Long Island iced tea.


Matt Jamieson

Brand Manager
matthew@thirstycamel.co.nz

Recently returned to NZ after living in Europe for 16 years, Matt brings a decade of drinks marketing experience to his role. His previous job at a Scottish distillery left him with a keen appreciation for single malt whisky and the ability to speak fluent Highlander. Matt loves fast cars, enjoys music and is a bit of a sports fan. Before marriage and kids, he was a qualified snowboard instructor and he reckons he can still pull off an inverted backflip on his trusty Burton snowboard.


Cam Timmins

NZ Fever-Tree Commercial & Brand Development Manager
cam@thirstycamel.co.nz

Cam mixes innovation and strategy, pours over his years of experience at Pernod Ricard and Absolut, then garnishes the whole lot with a slice of his extraordinary problem-solving abilities. He brings huge empathy to the role – something he may have inherited from his late grandfather who founded a charity for disabled children. Cam loves bushcraft and is slightly obsessed with his newest hobby of clay pigeon shooting. He wouldn’t tell you this, but his guilty pleasure is watching the Warriors.


Nick Bowes

North Island Sales Manager
nick@thirstycamel.co.nz

Nick spent years at Maxxium, Lion and Independent Liquor, and also ran his own bar, so he’s kinda like our very own Premium Spirits Wikipedia. A full-time family man and parttime adrenalin-junkie (the guy’s hidden talent is fire breathing), Nick loves heading out with his 3 boys to hit the mountain bike tracks. Sometimes the tracks hit back, but although he’s often shaken, he’s never been stirred into giving it up.


Mark Tarres

South Island Sales Manager
mark@thirstycamel.co.nz

Mark’s been infused in the trade for over 25 years and knows just about everything and everyone in the business. When he’s not serving our fabulous South Island customers, you’ll find him out surfing or hanging at the beach to recharge. Back in his heyday, Mark played soccer for Canterbury and was once junior light heavyweight champ at Chricton Cobbers Boxing Club. The gloves and boots were hung up long ago and these days he’s a big family guy, saying he loves the way being a parent keeps getting better every day.


Shelby Cowley

HR
shelby@thirstycamel.co.nz

A peppy glass-half-full type, Shelby’s the ultimate multi-tasker, taking care of HR, IT, admin and whatever else pops up in the running of Thirsty Camel. She’s completely unflappable and approaches every problem the same way: looking for the silver lining and always moving forward. Shelby recharges by retreating to the beach with her family and her go-to tipple is a moody dark & stormy.


Philip Fouche

Territory Manager North Shore/West Auckland
philip@thirstycamel.co.nz

Distinctive and mellow, like a good single malt whisky, Philip handles his client work with a sense of calm capability. Hailing from Cape Town, the outdoors life is embedded in his DNA and you’ll find him at the braais, enjoying good music with his family and mates, rain or shine. Philip finds woodwork relaxing and enjoys the satisfaction of making things with his hands (both of them – he’s fully ambidextrous).


Julie Thomson

Territory Manager South Auckland
julie@thirstycamel.co.nz

Julie’s Thirsty Camel career is perfectly balanced with her rural existence on the family farm with hubby, Warwick. A big animal lover, she loves raising calves and reckons each one has their own unique personality. After racing around the city serving our awesome Auckland clients, Julie loves to head to her spa pool, where she and her favourite tipple, a pina colada can be perfectly chilled together.


Danielle Harrison

Territory Manager On Premise Auckland
danielle@thirstycamel.co.nz

Danielle is a fully qualified chef (to watch her filleting fish is to witness a thing of beauty) who then built an impressive career with Villa Maria and Pernod Ricard, both in NZ and during a decade in Canada. Based in Auckland with her lovely young family, Danielle displays some of the traits of one of her heroes, Debbie Harry – she’s a strong, capable woman, earth advocate and Thirsty Camel style icon.


Sarah Bull

Territory Manager Waikato/Bay of Plenty
sarah@thirstycamel.co.nz

Sarah’s a certified expert in premium liquids and fancy bottles, having started out in the prestigious perfume market before moving to spirits. She assures us she’s never taken so much as a sip of Chanel number 5. This Caramilk-nibbling, netball-playing lady likes to start the day with an energizing family dance party and finish it with a full-bodied Barossa Shiraz while staring at the stars.


John Ridley

Territory Manager Wellington/Taranaki
john@thirstycamel.co.nz

John fancied himself as a bit of a Tom Cruise back in his cocktail bartending days and he has years of experience with premium spirits and hospitality. He likes to hang with friends and family and spin some late-night yarns over a drink. A big outdoorsman, John’s hidden talent is packing massive amounts of gear into the car boot. You say it won’t fit? Mission Impossible challenge accepted.


Mark Austin

Territory Manager Christchurch/Nelson & Marlborough
mark.austin@thirstycamel.co.nz

Well-structured and refined, Mark’s had a varied career and has valuable hospitality experience on both sides of the bar. He credits his father for instilling in him kindness, generosity and tenacity – values we appreciate here at Thirsty Camel – and is proud to have passed those on to his own kids. Mark’s a huge water-lover and is happiest waaaay out on a boat when he can no longer see the shore (must have been a handy trait when he did the Sydney to Hobart).


Clark White

Territory Manager On Premise Christchurch
clark@thirstycamel.co.nz

Smooth and extra-dry, Clark has a wealth of experience in hospitality, having managed pubs and restaurants and worked with Hancocks and Pernod Ricard. A keen surfer, mountain biker and skier, he’s happiest on the ocean, in the snow, or at the bar with good mates. He has history on the decks, so be warned: if you ever invite him to your party, he’s almost guaranteed to take over as DJ.


Liz Woodall

Territory Manager Otago/Southland
liz@thirstycamel.co.nz

Liz has worked in the industry for many years, both in NZ and the USA, and these days she gets a thrill from the always-on vibe of Otago and Southland. She loves spending time with friends and family and can actually cure hiccups (go out drinking with her and see). When she’s off-duty, Liz likes to get into a peaceful flow state while quilting and sewing, or to expand her mind and horizons by reading philosophy.





Kim Riley

Customer Service
kim@thirstycamel.co.nz

Kim’s all about the details. Her organisational and time management skills ensure orders run smoothly and this certainly sparks joy with our team and our customers. Those skills also come in handy at home, where she manages two busy teenagers.  Kim loves the beach and if you add a couple of good books, her family and a frozen margarita to the mix, you’ve found her happy place.


Tayla Bilbie

Customer Service
tayla@thirstycamel.co.nz

Our most youthful vintage, Tayla recently graduated from Victoria University with a double major in Marketing and Management. A clever cookie and serious foodie, she’s currently enjoying an exploration of Auckland’s many excellent restaurants. Tayla loves the gym and brings her pumped-up energy into work, keeping things running smoothly for our customers.


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