By Amy Looker
One of Australia’s most prominent liquor retailers, Andrew Kemeny, has relocated to Hong Kong where he plans to develop his Macro Asia wine business.
The venture hopes to offer in-roads to the booming Asian market for Australia’s wine producers.
Kemeny purchased Macro Asia under the name of Cellarmaster Wines Asia earlier this year and has restructured the business to include an on-premise distribution channel under the Macro Asia banner, Cellarmaster Wines, selling direct to consumer via catalogues and online sales, and Vinum Wine, a high-end wine brokerage dealing exclusively with en primeur from estates in France.
Cellarmaster Wines was originally created in 1991 by Peter Chu and has a strong presence in Hong Kong, mainland China, and Macau, with an extensive database of private clients and on-premise partners.
“Peter was ahead of his time when he created Cellarmaster Wines in Hong Kong in 1991,” Kemeny said. ”The consumer market wasn’t ready for it then, but now the time is right. Hong Kong is the wine capital of Asia, and this business model is unique there.”
One of Kemeny’s first priorities is building the Cellarmaster Wines consumer database.
Kemeny also hopes the Macro Asia business will open doors for Australian wine producers in a market that is currently dominated by Old World wines from Europe.
“Consumption of wine in Hong Kong has increased by more than 100 per cent in the past three years and that trend is being replicated across Asia. People are thirsty for quality wine and information, and the offer we are putting out there is being taken up with gusto," he said.
Macro Asia will officially launch in October.
The Kemenys business in Australia will continue to be run by the company’s chief financial officer, David Reberger.