More indies visited LWF

15 June, 2015

Visitor numbers at this year’s London Wine Fair rose 4% on 2014, according to the organiser Brintex.

The number of people from independent wine merchants was ahead by 2% to 1,195 – just over one in 10 of all visitors – but the increase was well behind a surge in visitors from the on- trade of 16%.

The total net number of attendees was 11,668.

Show director Ross Carter said exhibition space had sold out in what was the second year of the fair’s return to Olympia and a refocusing of the exhibition on the UK trade.

The event had its highest ever number of UK exhibitors, at 130, out of total of 670.

Carter said: “This year was set to be a real test. We were looking to build on the buzz last year’s show generated and really cement the London Wine Fair as the must-attend event for the UK trade as well as key international buyers.

“Many exhibitors have already secured their space for 2016, which we feel is a ringing endorsement.”

Mike James, wine category director of Aldi, said the fair was “busy and buzzy enough for a great atmosphere”.

He added: “Manageable size, focus and organisation made for a very productive few days.”

Neil McGuigan, chief executive of McGuigan Wines, added: “We saw the vast majority of our distributors, supermarkets and retail customers and it was important for us to attend and be visible.”

Gary Meynier, sales manager of Borough Wines, which was showing its wine on tap technology in the Esoterica section of the fair, said it had been “positive”.

He added: “We had lots of senior people here to buy new wines and have made good contacts, got good leads and closed deals.”

Meanwhile London Wine Week, which ran to coincide with the fair, claimed to have had 8,000 participants in what was its second year.

Some 6,000 of these were wristband wearers who collectively bought over 10,000 wine flights at £5 a time, from 100 on-trade venues taking part in the week-long round of promotional events across the capital.

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