US: Phillips Distilling Co takes on Europe in next stage of global UV Vodka launch
Phillips Distilling Co is launching UV Vodka across Europe
Phillips Distilling Co is confident it can find growth in struggling European markets as it prepares to launch its UV Vodka brand across the continent.
UV was unveiled in Spain last week and will soon roll out in Portugal, the UK and Sweden, Pedro Caceres, president & CEO of Phillips owner USDP, said in an interview with just-drinks. But, he admitted Europe poses a different test to recent launches in emerging markets.
“We are very well aware (of the problems),” Caceres said. “I know what’s going on in Europe and am aware of the financial crisis. But we need to do it right.
“Europe is more challenging than Latin America and Asia. But we think our brand can be successful and we just go in one country at a time. Those countries have expressed real interest in our brand.
“The first thing that we have to do is to ensure strong partnerships in those countries that can work the brand locally.”
UV Vodka was first launched outside of its domestic US market five years ago in South Korea. It is now available in Japan, Australia and Paraguay and was launched in the south of China last month.
Caceres said of the new markets: “We are changing gears this year and we are making our international expansion a significant part of our strategy.”
UV Vodka is the in the top six US vodkas in terms of overall global sales, he said.
Its flavoured range includes UV Blue and UVCake, which are in the top three in their category in a number of US markets, Caceres said.
In June, Phillips launched UV Chocolate Cake Vodka and UV Whipped Vodka in the US.
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