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Top Ten Importers 2016-17

Posted: Thursday, 25 May 2017 10:46

 

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Top Ten Importers 2016-17

May 25: Despite the demon of demonetisation raising its chuckling head and the Supreme Court 500m highway ruling, wine importers managed to keep a wry smile as the year ended with a positive note with the Top Ten Importers clocking a 12.67% increase over the previous year, with Pernod Ricard slightly ahead of the traditional leader Brindco, writes Subhash Arora in his Annual Review for delWine, estimating the total consumption at 475,000 cases, thus missing the half-million case mark

Pernod Ricard does not disclose its sales figures but according to the estimates based on our market intelligence, their sales turnover was around 76,000-80,000 cases. Aman Dhall of Brindco concedes that they were marginally ahead of Brindco sales which clocked slightly over 76,000 cases. But he stresses that he wilfully changed the strategy and now keeps profits in mind even if there is no increase in volume. Naturally, in terms of value, Brindco is miles ahead of Pernod-Ricard which is primarily selling the entry-level Jacobs Creek, the biggest selling single brand in India. (Chairman and CEO Alexandre Ricard had announced officially last September that the group had recorded a 12% annual growth in India.) The volume gap is expected to widen with their official launch of Spanish quaff from their Rioja stable, Campo Viejo.

Riding on the aggressive marketing of Hardys and adding new products like Kumala and Mud House and an aggressive posture, Sula has crossed the 30,000 case barrier and thus secured the third spot, overtaking Aspri Spirits and Wines whose strategy seems to be more cocktail-based products where the growth has been sizeably more than in the wine sector. They did slightly better than last year but nothing to write home about in terms of growth; still struggling to cross 30,000..

Prestige and Berkmann India are basically two pure non-family owned wine companies working steadily to establish their name in the market place and steadily increasing their sales. Moet Hennessey has been marked down; once again since they do not release their figures (or give any indicative figures because of the company policy) and a substantial chunk of their champagnes are re-exported. It is also the view of the market that their market share is constantly coming down because of tough competition by smaller players like Drappier, Taittinger and special grower champagnes being imported directly. There is also indirect competition from their own Indian arm, Chandon which has been making inroads into the sparkling wine segment at a high velocity.

Mohan Bros. Fell out of our radar because of the sales plummeting due to heavy slashing of their portfolio and ongoing restructuring for marketing, which might show positive result during the current financial year. 

A surprise addition has been the entry of Radico Khaitan. Moving out from the 5-star hotel Menus first and later Retail due to stiff competition, it has found a niche in the Army canteens, with many army officers swearing by Mr. Carlo Rossi- an estimated 15,000 cases are being guzzled through Canteen Stores Department (CSD). Ace Beveragez, a small but well-established importer for over 12 years has been also making a steady progress and crossed the 10,000 case Milestone for the first time, ousting last year’s entrant Wine Park.

Here is a list of the Top Ten for 2016-2017 (until the Finance Minister’s stated objective of changing the accounting year to calendar year, we work with Apr-Mar as our fiscal year in India):

1. Pernod Ricard 78,000
2. Brindco 76,000
3. Sula Selections 31,000
4. Aspri 28,500
5. Prestige 25,500
6. Moet Hennessy  25,000
7. Berkmann India 22,500
8. Hema Connoisseur 18,000
9. Radico Khaitan 17,000
10. Ace Beveragez 11,500

Total     333,000

Following table gives an interesting insight into the import industry for the last 5 years and the year-on –year growth. Our survey and analysis over the last 6 years shows that the Top Ten control 65-70% of the market-this percentage going down steadily because of new entrants outnumbering the exiting small importers and their faster growth rates. Currently it is estimated to control around two-thirds of the market-which incidentally includes Duty Free Sales even if they are direct from the producers or their international distributors, and also hand carried bottles and Diplomatic sales.

Table-Five years of Top Ten Importers since 2012-13

Importer 

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

2015-16

2016-17

Rank

1.

Brindco

63,000

80,000

60,000

71,500

76,000 

2

2.

Pernod Ricard

35,000

50,000

65,000

65,000

78,000 

1

3.

Aspri

30,000

30,500

21,000

28,500

28,500  

4

4.

Moet Hennessy

34,000

38,000

30,000

25,000

25,000

6

5.

Prestige

14,800

17,500

17,900

23,800

25,500 

5

6.

Berkmann India

14,200

16,000

16,000

23,800

22,500 

7

7.

Sula

14,000

15,000

16,700

22,000

31,000

3

8.

Hema Connoisseur

12,200

15,200

12,900

18,500

18,000

8

9.

Wine Park

 

6,000

7,500

9,000

-

-

10.

Mohan Bros

8,500

10,500

8,000

8,000

-

-

11.

Global Tax              

7,500

-

-

-

-

 

12.

Radico Khaitan

 

 

 

 

17,000

9

13.

Ace Beveragez 

 

 

 

 

11,500

10

 

Total

233,200

278,700

255,000

295,100

333,000

 

 

Growth y-y

 

   19.51%

( 8.33%)

15.72 %

12.84 %

 

Interestingly in 5 years from 2012-13 to 2016-7, the Top Ten increased their business by merely 100,000 cases from around 233,000 to 333,000, indicating a simple growth of 43%. This also accounts for a dip in sales of 8.33% in 2013-14-a disastrous year, thanks to the spoke in the wheel by FSSAI.

The growth in consumption of imported wines has been 12.67% over the previous year (2015-16), according to the Survey by delWine. It has been below the expected growth of 20-25 % targeted by the imported wine industry but is still in line with and in fact, slightly higher than the growth of 8-10% achieved by the domestic wine industry.

Traditionally, Top Ten have controlled 70% of the market but with an increasing number of smaller importers recording impressive growths of 30-40%, albeit on a much smaller base, the number has been gradually decreasing and is now estimated to be at around two-third (65 % ). Even assuming the number to be at 70%, the total estimated sale and consumption of imported wines in 2016-17 would be 485,000-flirting at half-a-million mark.

Subhash Arora

ERRATA: Sales figures for Aspri were estimated at 28,500 based on my conversation with Arun Kumar, Director Aspri Spirits and Wines in early March when the market was going through crisis due to the Supreme Court ruling. Unfortunately, he was not available when I finalized this Article last week. He has informed me that in fact, they did very well in March 2017, making it to a record year with over 31,500 cases sold; in fact, close to 32,000. This would take them to third Spot, slightly ahead of Sula who also claimed to have sold around 32,000 and we took the figure as 31,000. For practical purpose, we shall take the figure of 31,000 for Aspri also and consider it a tie for the THIRD Spot. This would also imply an increase of 2,500 cases in the Top Ten numbers which will be adjusted next year. Error is regretted but it also shows our figures are not liberal as some people insinuated. it also shows that our figures are taken very seriously by the industry. Subhash Arora

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