Wine.com Hosts Fifth Annual Industry Growth Summit

Partners with suppliers and wholesalers to offer the world’s largest selection of wine
and personalized guidance to consumers

San Francisco, CA, March 24, 2015 – Wine.com, the nation’s leading online wine retailer, hosted its fifth annual Wine.com Growth Summit, attracting over 300 industry executives, suppliers, and wholesalers to discuss growth strategy for the coming year.

Wine.com executives mapped out the company’s strategic vision, focusing on two themes for creating the best consumer wine shopping experience:

  • Offering the World’s Largest Selection of Wine – Growing the Wine.com assortment of wine with the goal of offering the largest – and best – selection found anywhere in the world.
  • Personalized Guidance for Consumers – Creating the most innovative platform and tools for discovering and enjoying the wine lifestyle.

They also highlighted progress made in the past year on key initiatives which incorporated input from last year’s Summit, including:

  • Growing selection by 17% to 15,650 unique wines sold in 2014. Thousands of new wines were sourced through wholesalers, winery direct relationships, and private collector acquisitions.
  • Redesigning the Wine.com web site to inspire the wine lifestyle while making it easier for customers to browse, search, and find wine, and better enabling wineries to tell their stories through photos, videos, maps, and detailed descriptions. The new site attracted 20 million visits in 2014, with more than 100% growth in mobile traffic from phones.
  • Offering personalized guidance via online chat. com became the first in the industry to offer online chat with a wine expert.  Consumers can now get instant online wine advice and personalized recommendations from a team of certified wine specialists and sommeliers.
  • Launching a new Local Pickup service. Another industry first, consumers now have the option of Wine.com orders being delivered to more than 2,000 FedEx Office locations where they can pick up at their convenience within 5 business days.

Afternoon breakout sessions focused on a variety of programs and tools Wine.com provides suppliers and wholesalers to present new wines, add and manage content, and replenish inventory.

“Today was about communicating and collaborating with our industry partners,” said Mike Osborn, Founder and VP Merchandising. “Our mutual goal is to provide the largest and best selection of wines anywhere in the world, along with personalized guidance to help consumers enjoy the wine lifestyle.  Our strategic relationships with wholesalers, importers, wineries, and private collectors are critical to making this happen.”

The Summit also featured two leading industry analysts – Danny Brager, Director of Nielsen’s Beverage Alcohol Team, and John Gillespie, Founder and CEO of Wine Opinions.   Each presented an overview of consumer trends in the US Wine Market in relation to trends at Wine.com, highlighting the site’s larger sales of imported wines (54% of sales vs. the national average of 27%) and higher average bottle price ($31.35 vs. the national average of $9.41).

In addition, Wine.com presented two annual awards to recognize outstanding suppliers.  The Wagner Family of Wine (owners & producers of Caymus, Conundrum, Belle Glos, Mer Soliel, and Emmolo) received the Exemplary Supplier of the Year award in recognition of the broad assortment and national distribution of its California portfolio, its attention to content and inventory, and its partnership in Wine.com marketing programs. The annual Wine.com Extreme Service Award was presented to H. Glenn Schulman, VP Sales for Maisons Marques & Domaines (importers and representatives of Champagne Louis Roederer, Roederer Estate, Dominus, Pio Cesare, Domaines Ott and more), in appreciation for his enthusiasm and commitment to Wine.com. Working with Wine.com for nearly 13 years, Glenn understands the Wine.com customer’s interests in world class wines and competitive pricing.

Suppliers interested in working with Wine.com should contact trade@wine.com.  Private collectors interested in learning more should contact finewine@wine.com.

About Wine.com
Wine.com is the nation’s leading online wine retailer offering consumers selection, guidance, convenience, and value uncommon in stores.  Wine.com offers the deepest selection of wine, with more than 1 million bottles available, and personalized guidance from certified wine experts.  With multiple fulfillment centers and the most sophisticated wine distribution network in the United States, Wine.com delivers in 1-2 days to most locations.  The company’s popular StewardShip program provides unlimited wine delivery and exclusive access to new releases for $49 per year.  Wine.com is majority owned by Baker Capital.  For more information, visit the company’s website at http://www.wine.com.

About Baker Capital
Baker Capital, founded in 1995, is a New York-based private equity firm which has raised over $1.5 billion in committed capital. Baker Capital invests in growth companies at all stages of development in both Europe and North America. The partners of Baker Capital have extensive private equity and operational experience, allowing the firm to provide its portfolio companies with not only capital but also strategic thinking and relationships.

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Media Contact:
Gwendolyn Osborn
415-248-4402
press@wine.com
gwendolyn@wine.com

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