Concha y Toro has strengthened its relationship with Banfi Vintners in the US

Concha y Toro has strengthened its relationship with Banfi Vintners in the US

Concha y Toro has teamed up with its US importer, Banfi Vintners, to create a marketing and sales entity, Excelsior Wine Company.

The two companies, which have worked together in the US since 1988, confirmed yesterday (14 July) that Excelsior will distribute Concha y Toro's Chilean wines and those of its Argentine subsidiary Trivento, along with the wines of Little Black Dress and Five Rivers from California. The distribution of Concha y Toro's Fetzer Vineyards brands will be carried out through a separate marketing and sales structure, with Fetzer handling the sales and marketing of the Fetzer, Bonterra, Jekel, Sanctuary and Bel Arbor brands directly.

Concha y Toro acquired California-based Fetzer from Brown-Forman in April this year for US$238m.

Under the “long-term” arrangement, Excelsior and Banfi will have separate national management as well as regional sales and marketing teams to Banfi, to call on wholesale distributors and help service the retail and restaurant trade. Banfi’s national account teams will continue to represent both portfolios.

Separate to the move, Banfi said yesterday that it has re-structured its own sales and marketing group to represent the wines of its wholly-owned Italian estates Castello Banfi of Tuscany and Vigne Regali of Piedmont. Banfi's consolidation also applies to the wineries that it has existing partnerships with, including Italian producer Riunite & CIV and Gruppo Italiano Vini, Chilean organic wine producer Emiliana and Australia’s Chateau Tanunda of the Barossa.

“We are changing the way we go to market as an importer,” said Banfi's co-CEO, James Mariani. “These groups are built to best focus on brand priorities, sensitive to the needs of the trade and, above all, the consumer.”

Excelsior will be managed by both companies.