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Wine Australia creates new role to grow Chinese presence

Published:  06 March, 2018

Wine Australia has created a regional general manager position, covering greater China, to which it has appointed ‘experienced China hand’, David Lucas.

Taking on his new role with immediate effect, Lucas reports directly to Stuart Barclay, general manager marketing, with Willa Yang, who has managed the China team for years, continuing his position as head of market for China, reporting to Lucas.

Created to help the Australian wine sector “grow and defend” the greater China market, Lucas was the ideal candidate for the new position, said Andreas Clark, CEO, Wine Australia.

“David has spent the past 20 years in Asia and has significant experience within the wine and spirits categories across North Asia,” he said,

Having undertaken multiple roles for ASC Fine Wines, one of the largest importers and distributors of Australian wines in China, including vice president sales, Lucas brought with him a “deep understanding” of Chinese channel management, he added.

Prior to ASC Fine Wines, Lucas spent several years at Bacardi and Allied Domecq developing spirits markets.

‘With exports to greater China now approaching $1 billion, it was essential for Australia to strengthen the resources it had in the market to develop “even bigger and deeper relationships”, said Clark.

“David’s channel management background across China and Asia will allow us to reinforce our ability to act as a key bridge between our wineries and brands and the market with all of its complexities, giving us a huge opportunity to continue our stunning growth.”