DB Awards 2016: a report on the winners

On-trade Supplier of the Year

David Gleave MWWinner: Liberty Wines

A well-respected and long-standing supplier to the UK on-trade, Liberty Wines impressed judges with its sharp acumen for targeting the on-trade through its focus on premiumisation, attention to customer service and well-rounded and diverse range of wines.

Judges commended the company for having achieved an impressive average on-trade selling price of £31.27 per bottle, almost £10 more than the UK average on-trade selling price of £21.51, according to CGA Strategy. Liberty Wines was also praised for its focus on education, with its Liberty Wines Academy programme training around 1,000 frontline staff from bar staff to senior sommeliers to date. This year the company expanded this programme, adding three new modules.

Currently offering 1,250 lines, this year the company increased its portfolio by 11%, bolstering its Italy, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, Burgundy, England and Central European offer. Premiumisation is key for Liberty, whose portfolio is designed to encourage consumers to trade up through price points. Judges also commended the company’s attention to customer service. This year the company trialled 24-hour opening of its warehouse, which kicks in when order volumes and/or customer demand increases.

Judges were also pleased to note its dedication to operating in an environmentally-friendly manner, having reduced its carbon footprint by achieving an 85% + average van fill for London deliveries and moving over 70% of Italian wine shipments from road to rail.

The shortlist:

  • Bibendum
  • Enotria & Coe
  • Jascots
  • Liberty Wines

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