Diamond Logistics’ top tips to launch a drinks brand

22nd June, 2021 by admin

The CEO and founder of Diamond Logistics has provided expert guidance on establishing a successful drinks business amid challenges such as the global pandemic and Brexit.


Brands should consider having at least four products in their portfolio, the CEO of Diamond Logistics said

Kate Lester, founder and CEO of Diamond Logistics, based in Guildford, UK, has provided several tips for creating a drinks business, including building a brand locally first, outsourcing non-brand functions and providing a portfolio of products.

Lester noted it has been challenging for producers during the pandemic, as many only sold their products in stores at a time when consumers were limiting their travel. The on-trade, a crucial channel for building drinks brands, was also forced to close due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Lester said brands must create a multi-modal delivery model and build a fan base to boost sales. She also noted that brands must sell locally and across multiple platforms.

“This can look like a really challenging proposition for startups – particularly when you look at the complexities of fulfilling all of this demand and creating a marketing strategy for each access to market point,” said Lester.

“A good fulfilment and delivery partner should be able to guide you through the operational bit with ease, and have systems to fully integrate with multiple marketplaces simultaneously. This will enable them to focus on the marketing.”

Furthermore, Lester highlighted that products with higher price points are cost-efficient when it comes to using a fulfilment model.

She continued: “A fulfilment model only really works cost effectively for higher unit value stuff – the average order of £20-plus ­with post and packaging no more than 25% of initial retail cost – and free delivery incorporated for multi-packs – or until sales are over the £50 price point.”

A minimum of four SKUs that can each be marketed independently is important, added Lester, who said brands must not be a “one-trick pony”. She also noted that businesses must ensure additional resources are put into research and development to create new products that will keep consumers interested.

Lester cited the example of one of its partners, London-based distiller Sacred Gin. The producer offers a portfolio of spirits, including gin, vermouth, liqueurs and whisky.

As a result of Brexit, Lester said brands should “crack their home markets first before launching a trans-European strategy”.

She explained: “This will allow time for the minutiae of the Brexit deal to sort itself out – we have found many delays in customs and subsequent delivery – however this is decreasing as time passes and I am sure will be mostly sorted by the end of the year.”

To find out more about successful fulfilment, download Diamond Logistics’ Future of Retail Report 2021.

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