A year after the House of Fine Wine distribution company was created with Société Jacques Bollinger and Henschke, Villa Maria, has confirmed that the new group has performed above expectations.
House of Fine Wine was created in May 2017 following the sale of Fine Wine Partners to Accolade and saw the three family-owned and multi-generational wineries come together to develop an dedicated distribution business for the Australian market.
Villa Maria chief operating officer, Richard Thomas, told TheShout that the secret to the success of the business has been the widespread acceptance from the trade.
“The House of Fine Wine launch has certainly been more successful than we expected, and as successful as we hoped,” Thomas said.
“It has been incredibly exciting, as we have had a fantastic reception from the trade in Australia and really welcomed particularly by the on-premise and independent retail groups, but also by the major retailers. It is a really good partnership between three strong companies – Villa Maria, Champagne Bollinger and Henschke – if you put those three brands together, you have a really good story to tell your customers and you have great wines.
“We are completely aligned with how we look at the world – we are all family owned businesses and looking at the next 100 years and not quarterly performance, but obviously we all like to sell wine. We have a great team on the ground and we have been very lucky to recruit really well.
“One of the pieces we have found that is very strong is bringing in the WSET training into our business and enabling us to train the trade as part of the offering that House of Fine Wine brings them, I think that is unique currently in Australia. We are getting very good traction with this training program, we really believe in it and to be honest we are also learning a lot and hope to take these learnings into other markets.”