Montana puts up a fight for first place

05 September, 2008

Montana is planning a massive on-pack promotion in a bid to win back its

place as the biggest New Zealand wine brand in the UK off-trade.

The brand is to run a neck-collar promotion on

3 million bottles, offering consumers the chance to win trips to New Zealand. Competition packs are expected to arrive

next month, and the promotion will run until Christmas.

The campaign

will be 10 times as big as Montana's "outstandingly successful" first New Zealand Experience competition last year, with 400,000 bottles involved, according to Pernod Ricard UK's wine sales and marketing director Nick Blair.

The 2008 vintage will

bring Montana's supply to the UK up to the levels it had in 2006, after a drop in volumes thanks to

the small 2007 vintage. Short supply, coupled with a price hike, meant a value drop of 6% in the year to June 14, according to Nielsen figures in OLN's annual Wine Report.

Blair said Nielsen figures showed Montana's sales grew 20% in the eight weeks to Aug 9 . "Our objective for the next two to three years is to move Montana back to its rightful position as the market leader in the UK .

The brand is also celebrating its role as a pioneer of the Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc style, with a range of promotions starting this year and ramping up early next year. "This year marks the 30th year since the creation of that style

and we will be looking to

promote the fact that we were the pioneers of New Zealand's number one wine style," said Blair.

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