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Flint buys buys Domaine Direct

Published:  29 May, 2020

Fine wine importer Flint Wines has completed the purchase of Burgundy specialist Domaine Direct.

Flint Wines said it could “not resist the opportunity to bring together two comprehensive portfolios” to create what looks to be one of the most in-depth Burgundian lists in the UK.  

Domaine Direct was founded by Hilary Gibbs back in 1981, establishing close relationships with growers and selling to top restaurants, shops and collectors in the UK. 

Based on “significant organic growth” over the past three years, Flint Wines said the deal is an opportunity for more immediate expansion without losing its core identity.

“I had known Hilary since the early 1990s when, in my formative years in the wine trade, I used to buy wines from her for Le Pont de la Tour,” Flint's managing director and Burgundy buyer Jason Haynes said.

“She had great names on her list then and the list today is even more impressive. She enjoyed mutually respectful relationships with all her growers, many of whom she had worked with for almost forty years. With restaurants unable to open currently, we wondered if this was the right moment for such a daring purchase, but we didn't wonder for too long! 

“It is such a great opportunity. We were already so privileged to work with the great growers that we do, and I am beyond excited about working with these new producers. For once I am relishing writing our new Trade List, which we hope to release in the autumn and which should read like an A-Z of top producers, providing a fitting legacy to Hilary’s great work. Last year we invested in people and a new IT system, so, strategically, it feels very much like the right time to be investing in such a venture, despite the damage caused by Covid-19. We can take inspiration from the past to build an exciting future.”

Established in 2006, Flint Wines supplies the some of UK’s top restaurants and wine merchants. It specialises in Burgundy, North America and Italy and works directly with over 150 producers from around the world.

It has doubled turnover over the past three years, with £14m forecasted between July 2019 and June this year.

Domaine Direct imports from over 80 producers, predominately from specialist area Burgundy, but also from the Loire, Champagne, Bordeaux and Southern France. It also imports from further afield, from Australia, New Zealand and California.


Top photo shows Flint Wines directors Jason Haynes, Sam Clarke and Gearoid Devaney MS