Yalumba firm raises indie profile

07 March, 2012

Yalumba-owned Negociants UK is to handle its own sales direct to independents for the first time, after a deal which saw it use third party distribution through Berkmann Wine Cellars came to an end.

The Australian specialist has added new wines to its portfolio for the independent sector, including Barossa Valley’s Rockford and Brokenwood from Hunter Valley. There are also new independent-specific wines from Yalumba itself.

Negociants has launched an “indies programme” of incentives and support including discounts, in-store activity and trade competitions, and will embark on its first winemaker tour in September.

Yalumba winemaking boss Louisa Rose will be joined by Iain Riggs of Brokenwood, Virginia Willcock of Vasse Felix, Tom Barry of Jim Barry Wines, Clive Jones of Nautilus Estate and Jeff Clarke from Ara on a 10-date UK tour.

Managing director Simon Thorpe MW said: “It is an exciting time for us and a significant investment in the business and the UK market.

“There is no substitute for having our own people represent our wines in the market. We want our customers to be as close to the wineries and winemakers as possible.”

There will be a dedicated sales team for London accounts and improved direct sales into the independent off-trade in England, Scotland and Wales.

Negociants’ plans follow a recent trend by suppliers to respond to a boom in independent wine merchants, including PLB’s decision to introduce a list of 350 wines targeted at specialists.

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