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Accolade’s Ade McKeon bullish about UK market as new wine formats launched

Published:  13 April, 2018

At an upbeat presentation at Accolade’s Weybridge UK HQ, where the company launched its 2018 UK Wine Nation Report and unveiled new formats for its wines, general manager Adrian McKeon spoke of “enormous untapped potential in the UK market”, describing it as a “sleeping giant”.


Carlyle Group buys Accolade Wines for AUD$1bn

Published:  05 April, 2018

In what has been a tumultuous week for wine, it has now emerged that Accolade Wines, the biggest volume supplier of wines to the UK off-trade, has been bought out by multinational investment firm Carlyle Group.


Hardys and Echo Falls achieve ‘Superbrands’ status for third time

Published:  12 March, 2018

Accolade wine brands Hardys and Echo Falls have made it into the UK’s Superbrand list.


Ade McKeon joins Accolade Wines as UK and Ireland GM

Published:  08 March, 2017

New World leader Accolade Wines has a new general manager for the UK and Ireland.


Boris Becker backs new Accolade Wine brand as TWE ends UK bottling deal

Published:  12 December, 2016

Tennis star Boris Becker has been revealed as a brand ambassador for a new Chilean brand from Accolade Wine as Australian wine giant Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) announced it will no longer be bottling its wine destined for the UK market at the Accolade Park base.


The week that was: top news, Q&As and opinion on

Published:  02 September, 2016

In case you missed some of the headlines this week on, we have put together a review of the top online news, Q&As, and opinion stories.


Paul Schaafsma to step down as CEO of Accolade Wines in coming months

Published:  30 August, 2016

Paul Schaafsma is set to step down as the chief executive officer of Accolade Wines in the coming months, but may stay on through the company's initial public offering which is set for next year, according to sources.


The week that was: top news, Q&As and opinion on

Published:  19 August, 2016

In case you missed some of the headlines this week on, we have done a review of the top online news, Q&As, and opinion stories.


Accolade Wines owner CHAMP setting the stage for IPO

Published:  12 August, 2016

Accolade Wines' majority owner, private equity firm CHAMP, has formally appointed Reunion Capital Partners as an adviser for the company's initial public offering (IPO), which is expected to be listed in the first half of 2017.


ProWein 2016: The importance of brand building within the UK wine trade

Published:  22 March, 2016

This year's ProWein was marked by a distinct spilt that seems to be happening within the UK wine trade. Discovery of small producers and esoteric wines is growing in popularity, but simultaneously so is the emphasis on brand building within the wine trade. Bill Hardy, of UK's number one wine brand discussed the importance of why brand building is important in the UK wine trade.


ProWein 2016: The challenge of the falling South African rand

Published:  17 March, 2016

Between the bush fires, one of the most severe droughts in the last century and a toppling currency, South Africa has not had it easy in 2015. The currency specifically has been challenging for wine producers and could potentially pose a problem for wine producers in the year ahead.


Insights: Tailoring wine packaging to the consumer

Published:  03 February, 2016

Angela Mount visits Accolade Park and gets an inside look at the how the company creates and develops packaging and merchandising for today's customers.


Q&A: Paul Schaafsma, chief executive, Accolade Wines

Published:  11 January, 2016

The recently appointed head of Accolade Wines talks about life in the top job, Chilean wine brand Anakena launching in the UK and how he plans to make Accolade a global one-stop shop for New World wines


Accolade buys Chilean producer Viña Anakena

Published:  15 September, 2015

Accolade Wines claims to be the first company to have a presence in each of Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, North America and South America after buying Chilean producer Viña Anakena.


Hardys pushing Australian regions following revamp

Published:  02 April, 2015

Hardy's has rolled out new packaging for its William Hardy sub-brand, which flags up the regions in South Australia the wine blends come from.


Prowein 2015: Improved technology is helping South Africa make "best wines ever", says Accolade's Bruce Jack

Published:  17 March, 2015

Advances in technology, including the use of satellite and GPS tracking data, are helping winemakers in South Africa make the best wines of their generation, according to Bruce Jack, head winemaker for Accolade Wines.


Accolade Wines sees profits rise £4m

Published:  16 March, 2015

Accolade Wines saw profits rise more than £4m in the 12 months to 30 June 2014, according to accounts filed at Companies House.


Stuart Broad signs up as Hardys ambassador...just don't mention the World Cup

Published:  10 March, 2015

With all the excitement of last week's March for the Independents events we missed out on news that England fast bowler has been signed up by Australian wine brand, Hardys, to be one of its ambassadors as part of its ongoing sponsorship of English cricket.


Accolade Wines finalises Grant Burge deal

Published:  03 February, 2015

Accolade Wines has completed its deal to acquire the Barossa Valley's Grant Burge Wines, which includes its brand, business and Krondorf winery.


Accolade sees its Mud House New Zealand wine brand go from 10K cases to 250k in a year

Published:  28 January, 2015

Mud House, the New Zealand wine brand, grew sales 2,500% in the last 12 months from 10,000 9 litre cases to a quarter of a million cases, according to figures released by brand owner Accolade Wines.


Australian wines not 'broken' in off-trade, but on-trade is a challenge, says Accolade

Published:  27 January, 2015

Accolade Wines has defended Australia's wine industry which has been struggling in the UK over the past couple of years, saying the off-trade is back in growth, although the on-trade remains a challenge.


Accolade Wines recruits Daniel l'Anson as first UK fine wine director to drive premium wines

Published:  27 January, 2015

Accolade Wines hopes to establish a footprint and market for its extensive range of premium wines by appointing its first fine wine director in the UK.


Accolade Wines releases alcohol-free Echo Falls drink

Published:  08 January, 2015

Accolade Wines-owned Californian brand Echo Falls has released a tea-infused alcohol-free sparkling drink made from fermented grapes. 


Accolade Wines going ahead with Grant Burge purchase

Published:  01 December, 2014

Accolade Wines and Barossa's Grant Burge wines have reached agreement on the acquisition of the Grant Burge brand and business, along with its Krondorf winery.


Accolade Wines confirms Grant Burge talks

Published:  17 November, 2014

Accolade Wines has confirmed it is in exclusive discussions to acquire the Barossa-based firm Grant Burge Wines.


Major wine brands see double digit growth, says Mintel

Published:  07 November, 2014

Hardys, Lindeman's, Kumala and Casillero del Diablo have all posted double-digit value growth in a flat market, according to the latest wine report from Mintel.


Virgin Wines teams up with Hardys with an exclusive range

Published:  04 November, 2014

Online retailer Virgin Wines has teamed up with Accolade Wines' Australian brand Hardys to create a new range especially for Virgin's customers.


Smaller format bag-in-box wines lead revival in category

Published:  09 October, 2014

Bag-in-box is due a revival, with smaller formats leading the way, according to figures from Nielsen which show the 2.25 litre box has grown 8.7% by volume in the past year.


Accolade Wines switches its European division from the UK to Poland

Published:  17 September, 2014

Accolade Wines is to run its European affairs from a new dedicated office in Warsaw, Poland rather than manage the operation from its UK headquarters.


Supermarkets set to cull wine suppliers, warns Accolade's Paul Schaafsma

Published:  11 September, 2014

The UK wine trade must brace itself for what could be large scale "supplier rationalisation" across the major multiples over the next 18 months, according to Paul Schaafsma, UK and Ireland head of Accolade Wines UK.


South Africa's Bruce Jack warns winemakers not to jump on "bandwagons"

Published:  11 September, 2014

One of the greatest challenges for a branded winemaker is not to jump on the latest "bandwagon" but remain true to your beliefs and make wines that are right for your company, according to Bruce Jack, leading winemaker at Accolade Wines.


South Africa replaces Spain to become fifth best selling country in UK, says Accolade

Published:  10 September, 2014

South Africa is enjoying widespread success in the UK, is bringing new consumers to wine, has seen an increase in both value and volume sales and has replaced Spain as the UK's fifth biggest wine selling country, according to figures released today by Accolade Wines UK.


Bruce Jack on the challenges and opportunities for South African wine

Published:  10 September, 2014

Bruce Jack is a key figure in the Accolade Wines South African winemaking team. His direct responsibilities cover the Kumala, Fishoek and Flagstone ranges, Tesco Finest, The Rustler, Stumble Vineyards, Breakers Point and Lost Ostrich, as well as strategic NPD. He talks to Gemma McKenna about how he is working with the Kumala winemaking team to help reposition the Kumala brand and ensure the quality of the wine shines through to customers.




Wine trade bets on fruit-flavoured wines

Published:  27 August, 2014

The wine trade is betting on fruit-flavoured wines - such as raspberry and grapefruit - as an upcoming trend for the UK market.


Echo Falls links up with British fashion designer for new limited edition range

Published:  14 August, 2014

Accolade Wines has introduced two new limited edition bottle designs for its leading Echo Falls wine brand that have been created by top British fashion designer, Holly Fulton.


Will there be any wine left? asks Atherton on Botham's Hardys' role

Published:  16 July, 2014

Anyone familiar with the dressing room feel of the Sky TV cricket commentary team would not be surprised to hear last night's Hardys' cricket legends dinner, to commemorate Lord's bicentenary , also included a fair bit of banter amongst the cricketing heroes.


Botham, Atherton and Gooch lead Lord's cricket celebration with Hardys wine

Published:  16 July, 2014

Legends from across cricket came together last night at Lord's to take part in a special trade dinner to mark the ground's 200 year anniversary and Hardys brand sponsorship of English cricket.


Accolade Wine borrows US$300 million to drive global growth

Published:  10 June, 2014

GE Capital International has provided Accolade Wines with a US$300 million cross-border credit facility in order for the world's fifth largest wine producer to continue to grow its brands globally.


Hardys to enjoy blanket advertising through Sky Sports and England cricket link-ups

Published:  06 June, 2014

Hardys, the Australian wine brand, will be advertised up to an astonishing 5,000 times this summer on Sky Sports as part of its sponsorship of England cricket.


Hardys launches direct-to-consumer online wine store

Published:  29 May, 2014

Accolade owned wine brand Hardys is getting into direct-to-consumer sales with the launch of its 1853 Club, dedicated to online sales of its more premium wines.


Echo Falls targets newcomers to wine category with fruity drinks

Published:  28 May, 2014

Californian wine brand Echo Falls is launching three new fruit-based wines in an effort to recruit new consumers and target its core 18-34 year-old female audience.


Enotria recruits Troy Christensen as chief executive as Alison Levett leaves

Published:  24 April, 2014

Ex-Accolade Wines boss Troy Christensen is taking up the role of chief executive at Enotria, following  Alison Levett's departure.


Accolade Wine's Kumala in Mandela film tie-in

Published:  14 April, 2014

Accolade Wine's Kumala has tied in with the DVD release of Nelson Mandela film Long Walk to Freedom for a major consumer campaign.


Q&A with ?Paul Schaafsma, general manager UK, Ireland and AMESCA for Accolade Wines

Published:  04 April, 2014

Paul Schaafsma the general manager for UK, Ireland and AMESCA at Accolade Wines about a new working culture for the group and his UK wine strategy moving forward.


Accolade Wines recapitalises with US $300m finance facility

Published:  26 March, 2014

Global alternative finance provider GE Capital has provided Accolade Wines with a US $300 million cross-border finance facility.


Australian harvest smaller than 2013, with quality "mixed bag"

Published:  25 March, 2014

The Australian harvest looks to be smaller than 2013, with quality a "mixed bag", say experts.


Accolade Wines' no longer 'slow to react', says UK chief

Published:  24 March, 2014

Accolade Wines' UK general manager says cultural changes at the company and a smaller team have made it more responsive to customers.


Hardys to be official wine sponsor of English cricket team

Published:  21 March, 2014

Australian wine brand, Hardys, is to be the official wine of the English cricket team having signed a three-year sponsorship deal with the England Cricket Board.




California now making the "white space" wines people want to buy says Joel Peterson

Published:  18 March, 2014

California is now making and exporting what leading US winemaker, Joel Peterson of Ravenswood  Wines, calls "white space" wines that are increasingly popular both in America in its key export markets.


Accolade Wines takes on John Ratcliffe as its new chief executive

Published:  10 December, 2013

Accolade Wines has appointed former Seagrams and Oddbins chief, John Ratcliffe, as its new chief executive.


Treasury Wine Estates and Accolade sign further bottling agreement in California

Published:  22 November, 2013

Treasury Wine Estates has signed a further deal this week with Accolade Winesto provide packaging and production services for several brands based in California, including its Geyser Peak, Atlas Peak and XYZin brands.


Wine Vision Live News Blog: Paul Schaafsma's vision for wine brand building

Published:  18 November, 2013

6pm: The key to building successful wine brands comes down to understanding category data, consumer behaviour and empowering your staff to make decisions and work more effectivley with the with their key trade customers, according to the UK head of Accolade Wines, Paul Schaafsma, speaking at today's Wine Vision global wine conference.


Accolades Wines acquires several brands from the Mud House Wine Group

Published:  06 November, 2013

The Mud House Wine Group has agreed to sell New Zealand brands Mud House, Dusky Sounds, Haymaker, Skyleaf and Waipara Hills, including the Waipara Hills cellar door and café, to Accolade Wines, subject to approval by New Zealand's Overseas Investment Office.


Accolade revamps

Published:  09 October, 2013

Accolade Wines-owned - an online tool for wine retailers and on-trade outlets - has revamped its website to offer a user-friendly platform with more advice than ever.


Morrisons bottles wines in the UK for the first time through Accolade Wines

Published:  07 October, 2013

Morrisons is to use Accolade Wines' bottling facility in Bristol as it looks to pack in the UK for the first time.


Tesco signs three-year business plan with Accolade Wines

Published:  04 October, 2013

Tesco has signed a three-year business plan with Accolade Wines, according to the producers of the number-one UK wine brand, Hardys.


Deborah Sleep: what the wine trade can learn from the re-positioning of Hardy's

Published:  20 September, 2013

Deborah Sleep, director of customer insight agncy, Engage Research, looks at the wider lessons to be learnt from the repackaging of Australian wine brand, Hardy's, and how consumer insight is helping it to reposition the brand in terms of price and quality expectations:


Q&A: Accolade's Paul Schaafsma on future trends

Published:  19 July, 2013

Paul Schaafsma, Accolade's general manager for the UK, Ireland and AMESCA, looks at the biggest...


Hillebrand signs deal with Accolade Wines

Published:  15 May, 2013

Logistics company JF Hillebrand has signed a five year global freight services contract with Accolade Wines.



Hardys celebrates its 160th anniversary

Published:  09 May, 2013

Hardys is celebrating 160 years of winemaking with new launches and commemorative packaging.


Majestic to list exclusive Hardys range

Published:  10 April, 2013

Accolade Wines has announced Majestic is to list its award-winning Eileen Hardy Chardonnay from later this month as part of the Hardys Signature range, which will...


Accolade Wines to launch Geyser Peak Californian wines to the UK

Published:  24 March, 2013

Accolade Wines is bringing the Geyser Peak range of commercial and premium Californian wines to the UK this summer...


Banrock Station launches Vote for Nature campaign

Published:  12 March, 2013

Accolade Wine is to donate £100,000 to the National Trust as part of a tie-up with the conservation charity and its Banrock Station brand.



Accolade and Cath Kidston clash over Babycham logo

Published:  15 February, 2013

Accolade Wines has issued a High Court writ to homeware company Cath Kidston in order to protect its Babycham mascot.


Accolade Wines' CEO Troy Christensen departs

Published:  30 November, 2012

Accolade Wines' chief executive Troy Christensen has left the business today "by mutual agreement".


Accolade Wines' chief calls on drinks trade to unite

Published:  27 November, 2012

Accolade Wines' UK head Paul Schaafsma has joined the call for the drinks industry to present a united front...


Ravenswood founder predicts a 'strong future for Californian wine'

Published:  16 November, 2012

California's godfather of Zin, Ravenswood founder Joel Peterson, predicts a strong future for the region's wine as the next generation of winemakers usher in "a whole new world".


Accolade's lower alcohol wine in cans gain traction

Published:  30 October, 2012

Accolade Wines' ready-to-serve sparkling wine-based drinks in cans are gaining traction, having secured listings across the major supermarkets.


Accolade Wines praised for community support

Published:  08 October, 2012

Accolade Wines has been praised for its "priceless contribution" to the Kayamandi township, near Stellenbosch, after helping fund two new classrooms at its Ikaya pre-primary school.


Accolade Wines praised for community support

Published:  08 October, 2012


The Deputy Mayor of Stellenbosch, Martin Smuts has paid tribute to Accolade Wines for its "priceless contribution" to the Ikaya Pre-Primary School in the Kayamandi Township.



Isle of Jura Superstition awarded Whisky Shop accolade

Published:  04 October, 2012

The sixth Whisky Shop's Whisky of the Year award has been given to the Isle of Jura Superstition.


Wineries need to build brand South Africa around world, says Accolade boss

Published:  25 September, 2012

South African wineries need to concentrate on building brand South Africa around the world if they are going to reach their full potential, according to Troy Christensen, chief executive of Accolade Wines.

TextSouth African wineries need to concentrate on building brand South Africa around the world if they are going to reach their full potential, according to Troy Christensen, chief executive of Accolade Wines.


Speaking at the opening session of Cape Wine 2012 in Cape Town, Christensen said he was happy to confirm Accolade was far more committed to the country than its previous owners, Constellation.

He conceded Constellation's priorities elsewhere in the world, particularly in the US, meant it could not have the same "passion" for South Africa that Accolade could now have.

Accolade, which has Flagstone as part of it South African portflio, is determined to play its part in building brand South Africa.

He said its challenge was not just in "investing in the quality of wine, but where it comes from".

Christensen said the "passion of the people and the beauty of the place" should be two driving factors in making consumers aware of South African wines. He used the examples of the enormous demand for Malbec and Moscato in the US to show how wine styles can become more important than where they are from.

Africa, he argued, has the potential to become the next economic powerhouse after China, hence why Accolade and so many other international wine conpanies were so keen to invest and have a strong footing in South Africa - its main wine market.  Africa has a great opportunity, he added, to be "a substantial driver of economic growth".

He said South Africa is well placed to benefit from growing demand from younger, better travelled wine drinkers in China who want to buy in to wine with a story and where it is from.


Rexam and Accolade Wines expand RTS sparkling range

Published:  08 August, 2012

Rexam Beverage Can and Accolade Wines have teamed up to expand their ready-to-serve Sparkling Collection range in a bid to attract new consumers to the wine category.


Paul Schaafsma on move to Accolade Wines

Published:  07 August, 2012

The trade is speculating whether Paul Schaafsma, outgoing Australian Vintage general manager for the UK and Ireland, will bring a different culture to Accolade Wines.


Radical shake-up in Accolade Wines' management

Published:  06 August, 2012

Accolade Wines has implemented a radical shake-up which sees Australian Vintage's Paul Schaafsma move over to head up the UK business and Ted Popov lead mainland Europe.


Richard Siddle: why Accolade and Treasury Wine Estates partnership should be applauded

Published:  27 July, 2012

The beginning of August is supposed to herald the start of what our newspaper colleagues would call the Silly Season. A time when there is very little hard news around and our daily news feed is full of stories of escaped pigs, or retired policemen travelling around the country in a bath of baked beans. But the world of wine and spirits does not look ready for a summer holiday just yet.


Treasury and Accolade join forces on wine packaging

Published:  24 July, 2012

Two of Australia's biggest wine companies Treasury Wine Estates and Accolade Wines have joined forces on the packing front to "increase efficiencies".


Accolade Wines acquires Geyser Peak

Published:  06 June, 2012

Accolade Wines has acquired Californian brand Geyser Peak, as well as stablemates Atlas Peak and XYZin, from Ascentia Wine Estates, with the aim of spearheading growth in the US.


Accolade Wines targets females with RTD sparkling range

Published:  01 May, 2012

Accolade Wines has unveiled a ready-to-drink range aimed at 25 to 35-year-old female at-home drinkers.


Kumala targets busy consumers in off-trade campaign

Published:  13 April, 2012

Kumala is launching a consumer campaign targeting busy people by offering a chance to win a year's worth of help around the house.


Accolade launches mid-tier Australian wines

Published:  05 March, 2012

Accolade is launching a new mid-tier to its Australian wine range to act as a bridge between its Nottage Hill and Hardys Ooomoo wines.



Accolade Wines renews Come Dine With Me deal

Published:  30 January, 2012

Accolade Wines' Hardys and Echo Falls brands have renewed their TV sponsorship of Come Dine With Me.


Accolade buys Chinese wine distribution firm

Published:  20 January, 2012

Accolade Wines is expanding into China with the purchase of a majority stake in a Shanghai-based wine distribution business.


Accolade Wines launches website for independents

Published:  04 January, 2012

Independent retailers will be able to get postcode specific information about their customers and which wines appeal to them, thanks to a new website from Accolade Wines.


Accolade Wines announces £4.5million revamp for Hardys Nottage Hill

Published:  18 November, 2011

Accolade Wines has announced a £4.5million packaging and promotion revitalisation of its Hardys Nottage Hill range.


Accolade launches low alcohol Stowells Light wines

Published:  15 August, 2011

Accolade Wines has launched Stowells Light - a range of lower alcohol wines.


Constellation changes name to Accolade Wines

Published:  27 June, 2011

Constellation has officially changed its name to Accolade Wines from today, along with a new strategy.


Constellation renamed Accolade Wines as sale finalised

Published:  01 February, 2011

Constellation has completed the sale of its Australian and European business to private equity firm Champ, and will be known as Accolade Wines from July 1.