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Industry Impressions and Future Plans

One thing that has impressed me about this industry in the short time I’ve been researching wine is how open everyone I’ve spoken with has been.

Coming from a real estate background I am accustomed to having everyone in the industry competing for what they consider a piece of the same pie. I had assumed that the wine industry would function in much the same manner.

I had planned to write this blog entry this morning and say that I’ve been pleasantly surprised, but that doesn’t seem to accurately convey my feelings. I’ve really been amazed about how open and helpful so many people have been. Every group of people I’ve spoken with have been more then willing to share their expertise from wine makers, shipping experts, other bloggers or even Robert Parker’s website and their policy to exchange links with others in the industry. I can’t convey the difference in industries in broad enough terms. I’ve been told on a couple of occasions by people that I greatly respect to only do business with people who want to do business with me. In real estate that’s not really possible to follow, but it certainly seems like it can be in the wine industry. For me, that’s probably the most exciting thing I’ve learned so far.

Moving forward I expect you’ll hear and announcement about our new company name in the next few days and that should be followed by a more intense marketing effort on our part to start growing an interest list.

As far as what we’ll be offering, rough guidelines as of today are the following:

-A high end wine club with quarterly shipments(every 3 months)
-Focused on Napa, Sonoma and Central Coast wineries
-Focused on hard/impossible to get bottles

I have a feeling there are going to be a few natural off shoots from this type of business plan which include quarterly clubs focused on different types of wine such as Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon.

Additionally we’ll be looking into a more entry level wine club for people that haven’t been drinking wine for any length of time, or simply don’t want to spend more then $20 per bottle.

Frankly some of the stuff people buy at the grocery store isn’t very good and the wineries are lucky to off load it. There is a ton of good wine available for under $20, but it’s not necessarily available everywhere in the country and it can take a lot of research.

I think there is a rather large client base out there for good wine, under $20 delivered to your door each and every month. Too many current wine clubs for entry level drinkers are simply sending out a Beringer bottle (that I could get at a grocery store) and raising the price and adding a shipping charge. To me, that isn’t going to build a long term business with either a customer or a winery. We want and intend to do both.

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