France produces 17% of the world’s wine and this sector employs more than 560 000 people on a national level. Naturally, in recent years, with the explosion of the start-up culture, a multitude of new companies are set to revolutionize this sector by introducing innovative concepts. These new startups operate on four axes: production, consumption, wine tourism and cellar management.
In 2013, no fewer than 13 startups in Bordeaux teamed up to create a collective offering digital services and tools το wine producers. Wine Startups is the first collective of entrepreneurs that proposes the use of innovative technologies and their know-how, to a traditional world. This collective promises wine producers to help with their presence in trade fairs, the creation of joint projects, the sharing of data and communication strategies.
Winestar which received the innovation prize at the International Exhibition of Agri-Food in 2012, produces wine in a can. Although this concept may sound outrageous to a French person, its founder, Cédric Segal, asserts that the can is the best packaging for wine because it protects it from light and heat and prevents oxidation and he hopes that the French market will accept it the same way Germans have. Winestar exports 60 million cans each year and they are already considering exporting to Asian countries.
Naked Wines offers to finance wine producers and to promote their first batch. The startup’s members, pay a subscription of 20 euros/month and this sum is then invested in small independent wine producers. At the end of the year, the customer recovers his/her “investment” in wine and receives a proper title of the wine.
Founded in Nantes in 2012 by Thibaut Jarrousse, Jérôme Pasquet and Luis Da Silva, whose objective is to democratize the “Web tasting”, 10vins, introduces itself as the “Nespresso of wine”. It offers a “perfect” wine served in capsules that the buyer receives in his/her mailbox but like Nespresso, they have to buy the machine as well. After a successful crowdfunding campaign on the Ulule platform, this startup has reaped more than 180% of its initial target.
Wine tasting and tours is very popular in France where there is more than 10,000 wine cellars visited by 10 million people every year, 39% of which are foreigners. As expected, several startups are trying their chance in this field.
Vitiplace is the leader in cellar management market. Beyond the simple management, it helps you discover other wines and allows you to share the information with your friends.
Cavissima also offers investment in wine. Concretely you buy your bottle, you store it at their cellar, if the price of the wine goes up, you can resell it and earn the surplus value. If the price drops, you keep it in stock, you sell it or you drink it to forget a bad investment.
Applications that help you choose your wine
There are already several applications that can analyze wine labels and provide users with all the important information about the bottle they want to buy.
According to a survey, 71% of French people would prefer to buy their wine directly from the wine producers. The website Les Grappes is a virtual community and marketplace dedicated to the purchase of wine. This startup has already more than 2,000 registered members who follow 70 producers. It takes 20% on each bottle while other distribution circuits take between 40 and 50%.