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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.

Daniel l'Anson has been recruited from Champagne Jacquart from his UK business development role to establish what it hopes will be a new market and interest in the group's portfolio of premium and super premium wines many of which are not currently seen in the UK.

Paul Schaafsma, the UK head of Accolade Wines, confirmed l'Anson is to take on his new role in February and will be responsible for establishing Accolade's fine wine division and building up an appropriate team to support it. 

But he also conceded this was a long term project and "it won't happen in five minutes" but that the quality of its premium wines "deserve" to be seen in the UK even it means "going through the hard yards" to get them established here.

He said l'Anson had a "blank canvas" to go out and make a name for Accolade's premium wines and demonstrate the "depth and breadth" of brands it has in its portfolio.

Daniel l'Anson to be Accolade's first fine wine director in the UK Daniel l’Anson to be Accolade’s first fine wine director in the UK

Accolade Wines has secured million of cross-border finance from GE Capital International.

L'Anson, who has built his career working wth premium brands at Champagne Jacquart, Château Thénac, MHD Diageo Moet Hennessy, will get the opportunity to work with Accolade Wines' premium wine estates around the world including Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and the United States.

It hopes it can slowly start introducing the top end wines from mainstream brands such as Australia's Hardys, the UK's current number one best selling wine, which also boasts high end lines as part of the Hardys HRB, Thomas, William and Eileen Hardy portfolio.

"We can go from entry level right up to super premium," stressed Schaafsma who said you only need to look at the job Penfolds has done in maintaining it ultra premium image for its high end wines like Grange.

The move is part of a wider strategy by the overall company to attract growers, who might have left during the end of the Constellation years, back in to the group and to invest in recruiting top winemaking talent such as Paul Carpenter who is joining from Wirra Wirra.