Diageo set to launch Bordeaux wines in India

April 1st, 2008 - 5:06 pm ICT by admin  

By Prabhat Sharan
Mumbai, April 1 (IANS) Diageo, one of the largest producers of beers, spirits and wines in the world, is all set to introduce some famous wines to the Indian market this month. “We are going to bring wines straight from Bordeaux in France - the abode of highest quality ambrosia,” Asif Adil, managing director of Diageo for India, told IANS in an interview.

“As for the domestic wines or for that matter wines from other nations, we do not think it will be a problem for our target consumer,” he said.

The reserve wines or luxury wines, as they are popularly called, will be launched under B&G Thomas Barton Reserve Wines. The price tag would have a sobering effect on most consumers - between Rs.1,600 and Rs.4,000, comprising both red wines and dessert wines.

Adil said surveys conducted by the company did show that younger Indians prefer beer, while the older ones guzzle hard spirits. But that, he felt, would not pose problems for his company.

“The people of South East Asia and China share similar taste buds and their food profile is also quite akin to each other. And the reserve wines being introduced caters to the oriental taste buds.”

Asked if he had a sales target, Adil said: “I certainly don’t want to have any pre-specified target. A specified target always entails constraints for the sales department. Instead of this mode of sales, what we intend to do is to create categories.”

This strategy, he added, was adopted when the company entered the Indian market with an indigenous wine brand Nilya six months ago. “It was a calculated risk which we took when we introduced it in November 2007.”

Prior to the launch of Nilya, Diageo had introduced three wines, Regular B&G, Blossom Hill and Piat d’or, in the Indian market.

“They are doing well and the introduction of reserve wines here is a logical extension of taking the consumer to a higher and finer level of wine sipping,” Adil said.

“It is precisely for this reason that we shall not appoint any brand ambassador for the product. However, it will be sold in duty free shops, select outlets, banquets and five star hotels.”

Diageo is listed on the London Stock Exchange and its American Depository Receipts are traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

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