17th January, 2013 by Euan McKirdy
One of Hong Kong’s oldest and most trusted retailers comes under Altaya’s “etc wine shops” retail banner
In a major shakeup for Hong Kong’s wine industry, not least from a sentimental point of view, the city’s Rare & Fine Wines, which has maintained a retail presence in Hong Kong for over three decades, has been purchased by Altaya, a largely speciality trade and retail brand that started operations in 2001.
The merger means that Rare & Fine Wines’ three locations in Central, Sheung Wan and Tsim Sha Tsui will double, with its etc wine shops’ retail footprint expanding to six locations. The merger takes place with immediate effect.
They will remain distinct from the etc shops, which are designated by their offerings from the three major wine-producing regions of France and are named accordingly: Burgundy etc, Bordeaux etc and Champagne etc, respectively. The first etc wine shop opened its doors in 2011.
The Rare & Fine Wines outlets will continue to operate under that banner with its one-stop shop approach offering a wide variety of good value wines, fine and rare vintages as well as key spirits.
“The acquisition of Rare & Fine Wines is the perfect accompaniment to Altaya Group’s retail arm – etc wine shops,” Paulo Pong, managing director of Altaya Group, said. “It is a valued brand that is entrusted by many wine lovers and we plan to expand the number of outlets to serve more customers.
“At the same time, we welcome the passionate and professional team at Rare & Fine Wines. Together we will maintain the highest standard of service and cultivate the brand in the exciting wine industry in the Hong Kong market and beyond.”
The move also signals Altaya’s ambitions to expand into the Chinese Mainland, providing a platform for further expansion with a target of 15-20 shops in the next three years in Hong Kong and China.