Boutinot also sees value in having agents on the ground in its key sourcing regions, rather than organising procurement remotely from its UK headquarters. “If you really want to get the best out of those sourcing markets, it's better to be on the ground,” says Moriarty. “You build relationships with people and spend time understanding more about the market,” he adds. “Having somebody on the ground opens up amazing new doors for you.”
As well as its sizeable presence as a respected distributor, Boutinot prides itself on producing wine as well; part of its “hands-on, ‘dirt under the nails’” approach. The company currently has vineyards in England, the South of France, South Africa and New Zealand. It also partners with a vineyard in Italy, owned by an Italian cooperative that is one of the company’s shareholders. Boutinot’s current success is a facet of its nimble approach to growth; as it continuously looks for new markets to expand into and seeks to learn from other wine markets across the world.
The US, in particular, is a market with significant growth potential for Boutinot. Its Florida sales office currently serves all US states, but its recent acquisition of a business in Colorado marks a shift to a state-by-state approach to distribution. “The US is like 50 different countries within one, so you have to look after each state individually,” says Moriarty.