Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Marie Brizard brands continue to build Americas business

Marie Brizard Wines & Spirits brands will exhibit in Orlando this year for the Summit of the Americas against a backdrop of strong sales and business builds across the Americas in 2017, both in domestic and duty-free markets. Now represented in US and Caribbean Duty Free markets by Chase International, MBWS is poised for major expansion during 2017 for all its brands, including Marie Brizard liqueurs, Gautier Cognac, Sobieski Vodka, William Peel Blended Scotch Whisky and, new to travel retail, Fruits & Wine by Moncigale.

2017 saw Marie Brizard liqueurs relaunched in the US with a totally new brand identity; more contemporary and bold packaging supported by a new “Are you liqueurious?” activation campaign.  At the end of 2017, six new flavors were added to this globally iconic brand, including Elderflower, Yuzu, Jolie Cherry, Pink Grapefruit, followed by Finesse Orange and Banana (in early 2018) strengthening a portfolio that continues to ride high on the wave of the cocktail trend. To this end, Marie Brizard is teaming up with the USBD (US Bartenders Guild) to educate bartenders on the brand in eight key states throughout 2018. The new flavors, along with the iconic L’Originale Anisette, can be seen and tried in Orlando, along with the multiple award-winning Gautier Cognac range. This year sees Gautier’s distribution expand to five new states in the US, including Illinois and Georgia, building awareness of the brand and giving it further appeal for retailers to stock in airport retail stores.
In a very competitive category, Sobieski remains the 9th imported vodka.

2017 saw MBWS brands grow strongly with Shopping China in Paraguay. William Peel Scotch Whisky has seen substantial growth of 80% in sales, while Sobieski Vodka and Marie Brizard liqueurs are both up by 20%. William Peel Double maturation, William Peel Honey and William Peel Spicy Shot all launched in 2017 and are enjoying great momentum on the borders. “William Peel is proving to be rather a star performer,” says MBWS Global Travel Retail Director Kevin Baker. “It’s really finding a niche; as well as its excellent performance with Shopping China, the brand is performing very well in Iquique Chile with Vierci which has listed both Double Maturation and Honey expressions. This year will see us launch William Peel into Mexico, along with Sobieski Vodka and Fruits & Wine, plus several other South American countries including Colombia, Honduras, Nicaragua and Dominican Republic. We’re very hopeful that this will lead into some key airport listings for the brand within the region.”

Fruits & Wine by Moncigale is a new line for MBWS in the Americas. This 11 flavour strong range of fruit infused wines sells over a million cases in France and, with fewer calories and a lower alcohol content than Rosé Champagne or traditional wines, is carving a niche as an anywhere, anytime refreshing drink. Available in red, rosé and white varieties, flavours include Grapefruit, Peach, Pear and Strawberry. This year sees it making a first appearance with Compania de Indias on the Uruguay/Brazil border at Rivera. Travellers using the same border can also now purchase Sobieski vodka and Marie Brizard liquers at the Mabo Sineriz outlet.

The whole MBWS portfolio has been growing strongly in Trinidad & Tobago with a 152% jump thanks to the great appeal of the new Marie Brizard bottles, together with the ongoing success of Sobieski Vodka, William Peel Blended Scotch Whisky and Fable wines. Marques Del Puerto Rioja Wines were launched in January 2018 and first results are already encouraging.

To build awareness and profile in the country, MBWS will be the official sponsor of the Famous Trinidadian carnival band - Fantasy Carnival & Entice - with Gautier Cognac, William Peel Blended Scotch and Sobieski Vodka this year.

Elsewhere in the Caribbean, Marie Brizard Syrups are now distributed in Barbados, together with Fruits & Wine which – following a great performance by White Sangria – will now have White Peach also listed.

Here the emphasis has been on building brands in the domestic market which creates a strong base from which to approach Canadian travel retail outlets – both at airports and on the US border.

The LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario) listed both Gautier Cognac XO and VSOP in 2017 and is to extend that with Marie Brizard liqueurs and Gautier Cognac XO Pinar del Rio for the 2018 Christmas season.

Now the 4th leading Cognac brand in Canada with over 6% market share and 14% growth last year, Gautier continues to perform well in the country and its new look presentation has been very well received. The new look Sobieski Vodka will be launched during the second half of 2018 while MBWS is working hard to build the presence of Marie Brizard liqueurs in the on-trade throughout Canada. Two Canadian bartenders will participate in the finale of the Marie Brizard Masters Competition, which will be held at the end of this year

Adds Kevin Baker, “As Marie Brizard Wines & Spirits brands continue to strengthen their market position in the Americas – both North and South – so the portfolio becomes strategically more and more interesting to the travel retail sector.

“Now that we are in the hands of the very experienced and knowledgeable team at Chase International, I am even more convinced that 2018 will see us making significant inroads into the region’s airport and border shop businesses.”

MBWS brands can be seen on the Chase International Booth #1215

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