Brown Brothers to quit UK market

Australian wine producer Brown Brothers has announced it is withdrawing its eponymous flagship wine range from the UK market.

Brown Brothers Moscato RosaCalling the UK “the most unforgiving market in the world,” Brown Brothers said that the “significant” shifts in exchange rates, changes in “customer direction”, increased operating costs, uncertainties due to Brexit and the sheer number of competitors had all made the market “unsustainable for our company”.

Dean Carroll, CEO of Brown Brothers, commented: “This has been an extremely challenging decision as many years of exhaustive effort have gone into the UK market, particularly from the Brown family and its in-market employees. But our belief is that the UK is now the most unforgiving market in the world and the opportunities for us elsewhere are exciting and far more appealing, therefore must be pursued enthusiastically.

“We sincerely thank Steve Moody and the team at [UK importer] Fells for all their hard work over the last three and a half years, and this decision bears no reflection on their efforts. We also thank Duncan Brown our UK/European market manager for his outstanding contribution to our business. His knowledge and ability to articulate our brand wine story is unparalleled.”

Steve Moody, Fells managing director added: ‘We are very sorry to see Brown Brothers leave the UK, but we entirely respect their decision which reflects the fast changing and very challenging conditions that this market faces. We wish our good friends at Brown Brothers the very best for the future with their unique and wonderful wines. We will work with all our customers individually to ensure that there is a calm and controlled exit from their involvement with Brown Brothers wines.”

The company’s Innocent Bystander and Tasmanian brands will continue to be sold in the UK and Brown Brothers wines will continue to be sold in Europe although with a “tighter focus”.

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