Chile warned to keep it low

19 September, 2008

Chilean winemakers and suppliers need to focus

on creating major UK brands at around

£5

to succeed in

ambitions to be the "next Australia", a leading international supplier has

said.

Mark Rimmer, national account controller of producer ZGM, said at the annual Wines of Chile tasting in London that Casiller o del Diablo was "the only one from Chile that is anywhere near as successful as Australian brands".

He added: "Chile's strategy is taking on the Australian boys, but we won't do it without meaningful brands - that's how the Australian business model was built."

Rimmer added: "We're not going to make the leap in the short-term. Much of the ground made in the past year and a half has been driven by availability, which is lacking in Australia and in abundance in Chile. It's not been based on brands."

Am érico Hernandez, European export manager for Viña Ventisquero, said Chile had not shouted as loudly as Australia about it s progress, but this was changing.

"The Chilean government is investing a lot of money in funding and innovation," said Hernandez. "We're seeing more grapes planted, experimentation with varieties, blending

and better technology. It's a really good business card for Chile and helps create a global image ."

Brands in lower price brackets will help Chile see out a slump in consumer spending and maintain the country's market share, according to the marketing director for the Chilano range in the UK.

Amanda Walker, of supplier PLB, said the company was responding to credit crunch pressures by launching its £3.99 entry-level Chilano tier.

"Not everyone can afford an expensive bottle," Walker said. "All r rps are going up in the market and we are coming below that with a generic offering,

at a price point that people want to

pay."




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