AWC has plans for Philippines

Jean Philippe Guillot, the Antique Wine Company’s new Asia sales director, on the company’s belief in opportunities in the Philippines.

Manila-SkylineSpeaking to the drinks business at AWC’s Hong Kong offices, Guillot said that the company was going to open an office in Manila with a focus on the on-trade there as well as some private clients.

“It’s a growing market, all the big hotels are there,” he said while noting that the City of Dreams casino in Macau, which AWC is developing ties with, is opening a franchise in Manila as well.

Next week AWC is hosting a Haut-Brion dinner at Sofitel Hotel to raise money for victims of Typhoon Haiyan.

AWC has an exclusive distribution deal in the Philippines with Clarendelle Haut-Brion.

However, while Bordeaux remains important, Guillot noted that Spanish wines are popular in the Philippines and the country is becoming a “big market” for the wines which, so far, have not made much of a dent in the Asia Pacific markets.

As such AWC has snapped up a number of exclusive distribution deals for Spanish wines in the country including Cava brand Codorniu.

Around the rest of the region, AWC has plans to work more in Taiwan having secured a distribution partnership with Olivier Delangre.

Guillot said that, unlike the UK, the focus was less on the on-trade in general (the Philippines and Macau aside) and that AWC wanted to present a “more personal”, “more dynamic” merchant model when it came to dealing with private clients at least, discarding generic email offers for tailormade ones and bringing clients into the office for monthly fine wine tastings.

“More face-to-face not screen-to-screen,” he explained, “we really want to be a tailor-made wine merchant.”

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