Wine Matcher “techs it to the next level”


Wine Matcher could take “days” off the time it takes to value a fine wine list, according to an article in this month’s drinks business magazine.
In the article, db’s Rupert Millar examines the online tool, identifying its capacity to “help merchants quickly and easily work through wine lists to determine prices, find trading opportunities and move stock through the supply chain.”
It does this by standardising fine wine lists using LWIN – the Liv-ex Wine Identification Number. It can then retrieve a number of different price points, such as Market Price, best bid and last trade, from Liv-ex’s 50-million strong database.
The article hints at Wine Matcher’s potential to change the way that the trade works in the future. Millar comments: “Many, I’m sure, looked askance at LWIN when it was introduced, and that is steadily becoming the technological ‘language’ on the systems of numerous merchants and logistics and warehouse providers. Wine Matcher could be the same; it’s there to use and it’s there to save time, freeing up merchants to speak to their clients, speed up trading and increase revenue.”

An article from LivEX Insights




Rumours are circulating that Saint-Estèphe property Château Phélan-Ségur has been sold to the owner of a leading shipping company.
According to a tweet by Jancis Robinson MW that the drinks business has not, so far, been able to absolutely confirm, the Gardinier family has apparently sold the ‘cru bourgeois exceptionnel’ to Philippe Van de Vyvere, the owner of one of Europe’s largest shipping firms, Sea-Invest.
Details of the sale remain unknown although the château was reportedly put up for sale with minimal fanfare some two months ago.
Neither the château nor the office of Van de Vyvere have so far confirmed the sale although both have been contacted by the drinks business.
It is thought the family has sold the estate in its entirety and have not retained any shares although the technical team will remain in place, at least for the time being.
The Gardinier family has been at the helm of the château since 1985 and the three brothers, Thierry, Laurent and Stéphane (pictured) have been in charge since the late 1990s.
As well as Phélan-Ségur, the Gadiniers own the famous Paris restaurant Taillevent, which also has an outlet in London now, Les 110 de Taillevent and one of Champagne’s leading hotels, Les Crayères in Reims.
Why they might have decided to sell the property is not known. It is conceivable they wish to focus more on the hotel and restaurant trade and have thus divested themselves of what would otherwise be an expensive asset.
On the other hand, they have also poured huge investment into the estate over recent years and critics and merchants alike are in agreement that the quality and consistency of the wines has improved dramatically, with the recent 2016 vintage being one of the ‘best ever’ wines from the property.
It is widely admired as a brand and certainly punches above its weight for a cru bourgeois with many people no doubting believing it to be a cru classé on the basis of its renown, quality and price.
Asking prices certainly have risen at the estate, though certainly not out of step with other properties in the region. Phélan-Ségur is a large estate though, covering some 70 hectares and produces a lot of wine in an average year.
Is it possible that in a bid to raise the profile of Phélan-Ségur and price it as a cru classé, the owners have found it harder to shift stocks? Or perhaps they found they’d hit a price ceiling and weren’t able to take the label any further?
Another high profile château, Troplong-Mondot, was sold last month to a French insurance firm.

An article from The Drink Business by Rupert Millar



Gruppo Campari has announced it has sold two of its Irish whiskey liqueurs, Carolans Irish Cream and Irish Mist, to Bourbon maker Heaven Hill Brands.
The US$165 million deal is expected to be finalised by 1 August and while Campari has sold off the trademarks, inventories and brand assets of both Carolans and Irish Mist, it will continue to distribute both brands outside of the US.
The two companies were acquired by Campari in 2010 as part of a deal which included Frangelico, the key acquisition target. Carolans is the second biggest selling Irish whiskey cream liqueur in the world.
Campari has divested itself of a number of brands recently, and has completely sold off all of its assest in the wine industry
Heaven Hill is one of the largest Bourbon makers in the US and the largest that is still family-owned, with a portfolio that includes: Evan Williams Bourbon; Larceny, Elijah Craig and Henry McKenna Bourbons and vodka, gin, rum and liqueur brands.
Bob Kunze-Concewitz, CEO at Gruppo Campari, said: “The sale of Carolans and Irish Mist is the largest disposal ever completed by the Group. We are very pleased to sign this transaction with Heaven Hill, a prominent spirits company in the US and a perfect fit for Carolans and Irish Mist”.

An article from The Drinks Business by Rupert Millar



Maison Louis Jadot has announced its acquisition of one of Santenay’s leading estates, Domaine Prieur-Brunet.
The sale sees the négoce house add a further 18 hectares to its portfolio. The new vineyards add the premier cru sites of Maladière and Clos Faubard to Louis Jadot’s growing portfolio of Santenay vineyards, which already include Clos de Malte and Clos de Gatsulards.
In addition, Domaine Prieur-Brunet has small holdings in Chassagne-Montrachet, Meursault, Volnay, Pommard and Beaune.
Louis Jadot said in a statement that it was: “Committed to ensuring the continuity of the work undertaken by the Prieur family over the last two centuries.”
The amount paid for the estate was not revealed.
In addition, it has also been reported that Maison E. Guigal has acquired Domaine de Nalys in the southern Rhône. Nalys owns 50ha of vineyards in Châteauneuf du Pape where it produces both red and white wines and is particularly well-known for the latter.

An article from The Drinks Business by Rupert Millar