WineWorld Xplorer: wine should be managed as an asset

Hong Kong-based WineWorld Xplorer (WWX), a multi-currency, multi-location wine trading and portfolio management linking Hong Kong, France and the UK, argues that wine should be managed as an asset, as it launches international multi-location storage and wine asset management modules.

One highlight from the two newly added features is the platform’s emphasis on managing wine as an asset in a fast growing market like Asia either for reselling, capital preservation and legacy planning.  

“WWX is a total wine solution that is much needed in Asia, which has seen a strong surge in demand for wines, including but not limited to wines as a product; but also, in ancillary services such as storage, portfolio management and so on. Asia is now on a fast track towards seeing wines not only as a consumptive product, but also a valuable asset,” commented WWX founder Mariana Lam. 

The Asia-Pacific region and Hong Kong are continuing to steam ahead as a major business hub with projected regional growth over the next five years from US$29 billion in 2016 to US$40.8 billion by 2021, according to Vinexpo.

The fine wine sector in Hong Kong is especially buoyant with major auction houses competing for rare cellars and bottles to lure wealthy collectors in Hong Kong and mainland China.

Aware of the risk of counterfeit wines, the company also recently launched an NFC-enabled wine tracing and identification solution called ‘VinoGuard’ together with multi-location storage and cellar management modules. The enhanced traceability all the way from an individual bottle to an entire wine portfolio stored in multiple international locations is seen as an essential step towards realising international wine asset management, according to the company. 

Different from other trading platforms, WWX claims to have the most competitive commission rate at 4.5%, “half of the current average commission rate in the market,” it said. Private collectors can subscribe to WWX’s Seller (Private Collector) plan at an annual fee of HK$1,299 and sell their wines on the platform. 

The company said it would also conduct a string of internal procedures to inspect the provenance of all bottles listed on WWX. All private collector bottles will be stored in WWX’s temperature- and humidity-controlled storage in the UK (LCB Tilbury) and Hong Kong (China Merchants) prior to listing.

“Ultimately, WWX strives to enable users to manage wine as an asset by enhancing liquidity, transparency and governance in this highly heterogenous asset class.” Lam concluded. 

The WWX was launched last year, and currently features HK$700 million worth of wine offers.

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