Monday, August 27, 2007

The Beer Distributor is the Vehicle of Choice for New Beverages

After a long summer, I like to start looking for new, exciting brands to add to my portfolio. Usually, I take two to three months to decide which new beverage brand I’m going to add. The decision process starts in early fall and lasts to the end of the year. I make my mind up in December and make contact with the different companies. At the first of the year, we start setting goals and objectives, training our sales team, and adding infrastructure around these brands. Once Spring gets here, we can concentrate on sales leading into the Summer months. Then we start all over again. This process has been very successful for our company in the past with brands like Snapple, Sobe, Red Bull, Fuze, and Vitaminwater. In fact, our non-alcohol division was on track to pass our beer division in gross profits by mid-2008. Now the bomb has dropped, everyday Red Bull wants me to spend, spend, spend. Fuze and Vitaminwater will be going to Coke by the middle of next year. Snapple is giving away the ship. What in the world am I going to do? The first thing is not worry too much. I understand that this is the beverage business and these things happen everyday. Brands come and go. One thing I’ve learned is that you have to remember where you came from. I think many companies forget that and get to big to fast. The brands I mentioned above were built by hard working distributors case by case, not by corporate sales executives. When I lose a brand I always know there will be another company that is hungry. There are literally hundreds of beverage companies that will offer my beer distributorship a nice margin, a good beverage brand, and an incentive to sell their brand. After all, my company is just a vehicle to get their brand on the shelf. Some brands I am looking to add are as follows:

·Irn-Bru - A mixed fruit flavored soda made with 32 flavors. Can be used as a mixer.
·Metromint - Purified water flavored with natural mint.
·Hint - Pure water, nature's original refreshment, accented with a hint of natural flavor.
·Essn - One hundred percent natural sparkling juice beverage.
·Luvli Juice - All natural, low sodium juices.
·Function - Make your drink work for you.
·Bawls - Guarana-based soft drink has been out for a while, but the new cherry flavor is terrific.

I will keep you informed of my decisions on these beverages and how they are doing in my market.

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