Wines of Chile: new US presence

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  • Thursday 15 January 2009

Wines of Chile is to open a new US office in a bid to capitalise on consumers’ increasing thirst for more diverse styles of the country’s wines.

Puro Chile, New York

The New York office will be housed in the new Puro Chile complex, a combined retail space, showroom, event venue, business centre and art gallery designed to promote the country’s wine and tourism.

Chile’s bottled wine exports to the US were up 8% by volume and 15% by value in 2007, but figures for October last year showed that growth had slowed to 3.3% and 3.9% respectively as the US slid into recession.

However, consumers are drinking a more diverse range of Chilean wines beyond the country’s traditionally popular Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet blends.

Exports of Pinot Noir to the US increased 23% to October, while Sauvignon Blanc was up 22%, and Carmenère and Syrah rose 21% and 19% respectively.

Wines of Chile has hired drinks industry veteran Lori Tieszen to run the new office, working in conjunction with existing PR agency RF Binder Partners.

Tieszen is a former Moët Hennessy USA executive who has worked with a number of spirits brands, including J&B, Finlandia vodka and Sauza Tequila.

‘The US has become a top priority for the Chilean wine industry and we look forward to establishing a strong foothold in this very important market,’ said Juan A Somavia, managing director of Wines of Chile.

Tieszen added that Chile’s potential in the US was ‘enormous’

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