Beverage Industry

Constellation Brands realigns distribution

July 28, 2009

Constellation Brands Inc. announced multi-year distribution agreements with Southern Wine & Spirits of America Inc. (Southern), Republic National Distributing Co. (RNDC), National Wine & Spirits and Johnson Brothers Liquor Co., which will result in new appointments for 19 states. Each distributor has the exclusive right to sell Constellation's U.S. portfolio of wines and spirits in its market.
 
Southern will have exclusive distribution rights in nine markets, including Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, New York and Pennsylvania. RNDC will have exclusive distribution rights in Colorado, Louisiana, Maryland, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Washington D.C. National Wine & Spirits will have exclusive distribution rights in Indiana, and Johnson Brothers will have exclusive distribution in Iowa. Constellation says the realignment consolidates more than half of its U.S. wine and spirits business to one distributor per market.
 
"This fundamentally different distribution model is structured to improve organic growth through deeper, highly aligned distributor relationships, fully dedicated distributor teams and divisions focusing exclusively on Constellation's portfolio and priorities, and improved coordination of marketing and promotional programs that support the brands," the company said in a statement.
 
"This is a new beginning for our U.S. business and an important moment in Constellation's history," added Rob Sands, president and chief executive officer of Constellation Brands. "It represents the culmination of an 18-month transformation within the U.S., during which we created an incredibly powerful portfolio of premium, consumer-preferred wine and spirits brands, and now have carefully selected distributors for our next wave of growth. Our new go-to-market strategy, and its inherent emphasis on driving organic growth in a growing category, is the natural next step for us and our distributors."