How to grow wine sales in the US

South Australian researchers will tackle the problem of flagging Australian wines sales to the US at a special workshop as part of the 17th Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference (AWITC) in Adelaide.

Professor Roberta Crouch, from the College of Business, Government and Law at Flinders University, and UniSA’s Ehrenberg-Bass Institute Associate Professor Armando Corsi will lead the workshop, with Wine Australia’s Peter Bailey and experts from the US wine trade.

While Australian wine exports to the US fell about 8% in value and 11% in volume in 2018, the US still represents Australia’s second biggest wine export market.

Professor Crouch, the director of MBA and Masters of Business Degrees at Flinders, says raising industry understanding of this key market is important to achieve sustainable growth.

“If we want to improve sales, particularly for higher priced premium wines, we need to be really listening to the operators, to become the best partners in their business success,” Professor Crouch says.

To reverse the trend, Associate Professor Corsi says it’s critical to “understanding how to both build and maintain relationships with trade operators including importers, distributors and retailers – and understanding what trade operators want when choosing the brands they stock.”

The workshop, ‘How to grow sales in the US wine market’, will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre on Sunday July 21 2019 from 4.30 pm to 7 pm.

Local producers and sellers will be guided by insights into two key market reports – ‘The ties that bind: building strong importer and retailer relationships to drive premium wine export sales’ and ‘Driving the strategic growth of Australian wines in the US export market’.  They include information on the product features the US wine trade (importers, distributors, retailers and restaurants) and consumers value the most when selecting a bottle of premium wine.

Flinders Professor in Business Management, Professor Crouch, says the workshop is the only ‘non-tech’ workshop at the conference, and will close the loop on the research projects commissioned by Wine Australia.

“We investigated the UK and US fine wine market from the perspective of how to build strong business to business relationships and what were the key aspects wines they decided to stock for their retail or fine wine customers.

“Leading US importers of fine wine who are coming to participate in the workshop will interact directly with Australian wine exporters,” she says.

Professor Roberta Crouch doing a barrel tasting with Nick Knappstein.
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