Giancarlo Bianchetti: I am responsible, at a corporate level, for the U.S. market for Viña Concha y Toro. In this position I have two roles:
First, as the CEO of Fetzer Vineyards, I am responsible for sales, marketing, finance and production on a global basis for our brands. We currently produce and sell 2.7 million 9-liter cases domestically and in 40+ countries around the world.
On the other hand, I am a member of the Board of Directors of Excelsior Wine Company. This is our import company that sells our brands from Chile and Argentina in the U.S. market. This is a 3.0 million 9-liter case operation in the domestic market.
In total, I am managing a 5.7 million 9-liter case business.
What have been recent highlights for Fetzer and connected operations?
Mr. Bianchetti: We have continued our work of improving, in all aspects, the key brands of our portfolio.
The Fetzer brand has been revitalized through innovations like Crimson and Quartz’s new range of wines and new formats like the Zipz premium single-serve.
Bonterra is experiencing a healthy growth and receiving important awards as the 90 points for our Pinot Noir 2011 from Wine Enthusiast. They described this wine saying “This might be the best value Pinot out there”.
We have also redefined our enological proposals for Jekel and Five Rivers wineries aiming for greater quality and more attractive price points.
Finally, on our import portfolio, we have continued building our key brands: Casillero del Diablo, Marques de Casa Concha and Don Melchor. All of these brands are being built on their exceptional value in the segment from $10 and above.
What has changed in operations of Fetzer and related brands since the acquisition by Concha y Toro?
Mr. Bianchetti: We were very pleased with the operations team we found here at Fetzer. The team has a strong passion and dedication for the rebuilding of our wine brands. We are focused on quality at all stages of our operations. We know that together with quality and continued innovation we will reposition Fetzer Vineyards in the consumers mind.
How has the launch of Zipz single-serving bottles for Fetzer progressed?
Mr. Bianchetti: We introduced our unique premium single-serve Zipz format in April of this year. The initial focus has been on venues such as sporting and concert arenas. Our consumers have been excited with the convenience of the package but most importantly with the quality of the wine. We are looking forward to opening up new markets in 2014.
How healthy is the U.S. and global wine business, from the perspective of Fetzer and other Concha y Toro brands?
We believe the U.S. wine business is healthy. There is so much opportunity to grow in the world’s largest market.
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