Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris 2022 ended on a very positive note after three intense days of engagement, discussions and business meetings. Both exhibitors and visitors relished the opportunity to meet up again after a two-year hiatus. The much-awaited international event honoured its commitment to the wine and spirits industry.
Set in the heart of the world’s lifestyle capital, Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris welcomed 2,864 exhibitors and 25,739 trade visitors, including 28% international visitors from 109 countries. The top 5 represented nations – Belgium, the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands and the United States – attended in large numbers alongside the French. The quality of visitor attendance mirrored the quality of business. 77 % of visitors are involved in the wine-buying decision-making process: 51 % of them are importers, wholesalers and specialist distributors, 32 % are wine merchants and specialist chains, and 17 % are from the hospitality industry.
The Vinexposium Connect digital portal ramped up business opportunities with 19,350 meeting requests registered from 1 to 16 February, 69% active exhibitors and ultimately 3,068 pre-arranged meetings conducted on stands during the event.
During the official opening ceremony, Julien Denormandie, the French Minister for Agriculture and Food, commended a cohesive event contributing to France’s overseas reputation. Franck Riester, French Minister attached to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs in charge of Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness, highlighted “the extraordinary success of this exhibition, supported by an industry committed to international development”.
Down to business
Testimonials by both exhibitors and buyers – French and international – confirmed the relevance of the 2022 event: François Dugoua, CEO of Ulysse Cazabonne, stressed the success of this remarkable exhibition and rare opportunity to meet international buyers: “As the exhibition ends, we are satisfied. The buyers showed up and appointments came in quick succession. The in-person event added value to our discussions. We met American, Russian and European buyers, and of course the French. The timing is good. Attending an exhibition in Paris is highly positive. Our customers loved it because the city has many advantages. The aim now is to build on this momentum in 2023 and we can already confirm that we will be there!”
Winegrower and owner of Vins d’Azel, Azeline Delarue, was among the young winegrowers looking for their first distribution networks in France and internationally in the ‘Nouvelle Vague’ area. She is delighted to have found favour with her first international customers: “Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris is our first exhibition. We have had many contacts, mainly importers who have shown great interest in our products. They are looking for family estates with a particular typicity and character, stemming from the personality of the producer. Our experience of canvassing new clients was positive”.
In the ‘Be Spirits’ area, Vincent Barthe, marketing director for France with the Club des Marques, also confirmed the success of the event: “Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris enabled us to meet new and potential clients – we needed to get back into trade fairs and reconnect. As an Armagnac specialist, Be Spirits was the place to be. The timing of the exhibition was perfect for launching our new range, Pousse Rapière. Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris is a major event where we reached out to the trade in Europe and Canada. Our product mix enabled us to attract many potential clients from the on-trade, supermarkets and the world of mixology”.
American buyer Jean-François Bonneté, president and founder of BCI Bonneté Inc, praised the atmosphere at the show: “We take part in Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris because in 72 hours we can meet key players who are important for the industry and for our business. This event is a real success because it is very business-focused with high quality and efficient meetings every hour. It’s a great way to see the world and to see all our partners. The timing in February is perfect, congratulations. You did well, really well!”
Benjamin Rojas Andonaegui, export manager with Viña Del Pedregal (Chile), was delighted to be able to reconnect and resume storytelling for his brand: “Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris sets the trend to get over the pandemic. We are almost back to normal because you still need to travel and continue to tell stories. It has been the perfect amount of people – mostly trade buyer / business oriented profiles – from all over Europe”.
The pleasure of being reunited
For many exhibitors and visitors, another high point of the event was the chance to reunite: Bruno Kessler, chief winemaker at Cordier by InVivo, stressed how the exhibition brought people together again: “The event followed the inception of our new identity and energised our teams, who rediscovered the warmth of one-to-one contact with our customers and potential clients. We welcomed a lot of people yet still found the time we needed to have qualified appointments with visitors”.
For Svetlana Grantcharova Bodineau, marketing manager for communications and wine tourism at Champagne Panier, the 2022 exhibition is “an excellent show that exceeded our expectations in terms of international contacts despite the impact of the pandemic. We were an absolute smash, both in France and internationally. The personal contact everyone had been waiting for was there”.
The joy of being together
One memorable aspect of Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris, both inside and outside the exhibition, was the friendly, festive atmosphere: Gérard Bertrand, president of the Gérard Bertrand Group, said: “The exhibition released essential energy, which was paramount. The conditions for welcoming existing and potential customers and for making the industry’s reunion in Paris a memorable occasion were perfect”.
Valérie Pajotin, director of Anivin De France, enthused as much about the success of the wine cocktails as about the genuine clubbing atmosphere of the Infinite Bar. “The foreign buyers we welcomed during the exhibition were very keen to taste the only cocktails made from varietal Vins De France at the Infinite Bar. In fact, the cocktails were so well received that we have decided to launch one of them, the Chardo Mule made from Chardonnay, internationally”.
With the wheels now in motion after Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris 2022, Vinexposium is preparing the 2023 event with a single-minded ambition, which is to improve and enhance the business experience for all participants, whilst resonating with the hearts of trade members across the spectrum.
The next WINE PARIS & VINEXPO PARIS will take place from 13 to 15 February 2023.