Wine industry tech platform Winedepot has launched a 10,000 pallet climate-controlled national distribution centre (NDC) on the border of NSW and Victoria, to facilitate its plan to launch a direct-to-trade marketplace in late 2020.
The business will double its team from 12 to 24 staff to support the launch of the new platform and DC, which will support its current depots and give access to regional storage and distribution hubs for local wineries.
“Strategically it makes a lot of sense. Not only will it make Winedepot’s Smart Logistics Solution is more appealing to NSW and Victorian producers but also provides an important resource to support the Direct-to-Trade Marketplace when it goes live later this year,” Digital Wines CEO Dean Taylor said.
“The National Distribution Centre has the capability of being expanded to 25,000 pallet spaces if required, providing us the opportunity to increase our presence in the bulk packaged wine storage market, at a time when Wine Australia is warning that the global oversupply of wine will be its highest in at least 10 years.”
Winedepot invests in technology servicing the global wine industry, which is valued at over $300 billion.
The Sydney based tech startup reported a high sign up rate of new customers during the COVID outbreak and quarterly order volumes increased as Australian consumers began buying alcohol online due to pub closures.
The company’s Smart Logistics Solution offers same and next day delivery in all major capital cities, which will soon be complemented by the upcoming direct-to-trade marketplace. Taylor said the online store will enable wineries to connect to over 60,000 licensed venues and will help cut cost by an estimated A$770 million per year.
“The direct-to-consumer wine sales market in Australia alone is estimated to be worth over $1 billion per annum and employs tens of thousands of people around the country. Our platform allows producers to transact directly without having to go through a distributor or a wholesaler who on average would take 35 to 50 per cent of the of the margin,” Taylor told Inside FMCG.
“Currently this represents almost a billion dollars of revenue being lost to wholesale distribution each year. Our ability to offer customers these savings whilst enabling same and next day delivery nationally – we’re the only wine company in Australia that can actually do that currently makes Winedepot a very attractive proposition.
“We’re changing the status quo and we’re just getting started, so the potential for growth not just in Australia but globally is enormous.”
Taylor said that he’s optimistic about the impact of a trade deal between Australia and the UK.
“The UK has historically been one of Australia’s largest export markets. It has declined immensely over the last decade. I believe that the trade deal has the potential to help restore this market,” he said.