In less than three years, Jen & Zach Pelka, the sister and brother co-founders of Une Femme, have taken what was supposed to be an in-house wine brand for their Champagne Bars The Riddler to the fastest-growing sparkling wine in the US. Leveraging data from The Riddler sales with a mission of promoting women and enabling the shattering of glass ceilings, Jen & Zach have taken a CPG approach to rocket Une Femme to become a national player.
Detailed Show Notes:
Une Femme launch
Initially designed as an in-house brand for The RiddlerData from The Riddler, from 2 bars, 150-200 wines sold by the glass, 70% women, difficult to find affordable, approachable sparkling rosés by the glass led to Une Femme designLaunched Feb 2020 - a bad time for on-premise, Covid closures forced more national distributionWine portfolio
The Betty - sparkling white, named after Betty White, no dosage, 80% PN / 20% CHThe Callie - sparkling rosé from California, 1st wine to take off$32 retail Product
Work directly w/ wineries and winemakers, capital-light modelMostly Central Coast, CAMade in 3 locations w/ a Type 2 winery licenseMade w/ Charmat method (tank) - faster, less expensive, more scalable, spends 1-3 months in tankMotto - “World-class women-made wines that give back to female-centered charities”
Each wine partnered w/ charities, which gets a lot of press
The Callie - Breast Cancer Research FundThe Betty - Dress for SuccessLimited Edition Wines (Piquettes) - Tree SistersBatonnage Forum (for more detail, see XChateau Ep 40)Assesses donations every quarter for contribution amount; can’t tie a specific $ amount to a bottle due to alcohol complianceFastest growing sparkling wine brand in the US
2020 - 1,500 cases2021 - 5,400 cases2022E - ~100,000 cases2023E - >200,000 casesAspiration - 400-500k case brand to become a “call brand” for sparkling wine, where customers ask for it by nameDiversity at scale is mostly restricted by access to capital (Une Femme just able to raise $10M Series A)Packaging
Multiple formats - 750ml, 187ml, 250ml cansSmall formats launched to take advantage of events, charities where small bottles (w/ straws) / cans will be photographed/seen vs. drinking from a glass250ml cans driven by Delta - lighter, more scalable, sustainablePrice - will be ~$24.99 from major retail partners as the product scales
Targeting premiumization categories ($20-40 range) and growing the sparkling categoryPromotion
Brand partners - Marriott (by the glass in high-end hotels - Ritz Carlton, St Regis, JW Marriott), DeltaMost successful promotion - Hall of Femme awards program celebrated 365 women who have shattered a glass ceiling. Sent them a crate of wine with stunt glass and a hammer to shatter it. Based on the brand name “Une Femme,” meaning it only takes 1 woman to shatter a glass ceilingHas done social media, paid advertising, email marketing, & just started text marketingDoes a lot of events and donations to lots of charitiesWord of mouth from friends in the industry (e.g., wine shop owners, sommeliers) Branded credit card - to be part of customers' lives, introducing similar, women-focused, women-owned brands (e.g., Milk Bar), capitalizing on the movement of women supporting women, esp with their walletsBrand ambassador program - run through a 3rd party as a way to have affiliate marketing for influencersHighest ROI marketing - things that lead to partnerships w/ large national players, e.g., trade shows Get access to library episodes
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