SEOUL, Oct. 24 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korean retail giants are stepping up efforts to secure rare premium wines as the domestic wine market is growing at a rapid pace.
Lotte Department Store recently hired a string of professional wine sommeliers specialized in sourcing premium foreign wines differentiated from the other wines popular in the domestic market, according to industry sources.
Instead of sticking to low and mid-priced wines that previously served as a mainstay, it pushed the share of premium wines up to 40 percent.
Thanks to such efforts, the department store chain saw its wine sales rise by more than 20 percent in September.
Shinsegae Group acquired Shafer Vineyards, a winery in Napa Valley, California in February through a U.S. subsidiary, and additionally took over a vineyard in Stag’s Leap in August.
The group plans to supply premium wines that are produced in small quantities to Shinsegae Department Store and E-Mart Inc..
Meanwhile, Hyundai Department Store set up Vino H, a subsidiary specializing in wine imports and distribution, as part of efforts to explore organic premium wines overseas and import them exclusively to the domestic market.
Thus far, the group has brought about 100 different kinds of wines from about 10 wineries in France and Italy, and plans to expand to 300 in the future.
Ashley Song (email@example.com)