7 June 2016: - Invivo, New Zealand’s most talked about winery, can today announce that it’s signed a nationwide distribution agreement with Lion, effective 18 July 2016. The agreement will see Lion distributing Invivo Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, Invivo Marlborough Pinot Gris and Graham Norton’s Own Sauvignon Blanc.
For Invivo cofounder Tim Lightbourne, it’s another big step for the 8-year-old company, and good news for Invivo’s investors and fans. “Rob and I set out to make wine that people like us would enjoy drinking – so this exciting partnership means Invivo drinkers all over the country will now find our wines widely available through Lion’s customers across New Zealand.”
Lion NZ Managing Director Rory Glass says, “Invivo is a great Kiwi success story, showing impressive growth since its launch in 2008 through a combination of innovative marketing, some high profile brand ambassadors, and most importantly: great wine. We’re excited to partner with Invivo to distribute its award-winning wines throughout New Zealand.”
Invivo started in difficult times, launching in the middle of the GFC with limited funds, and sleeping on mates’ couches in the UK when visiting customers. They’ve been named a Deloitte Fast50 company and now export their wines to 17 countries. The Lion deal caps off a huge couple of years for Invivo that have included:
- New Zealand and the Southern Hemisphere’s first $2 million crowd equity raise;
- Flying grapes to London for Graham Norton to stomp on set for use in his signature wine;
- Welcoming Norton as an investor and appointing him “Chief Winemaker” to blend his award-winning 2015 SauviGNon Blanc
- Selling over 400,000 bottles of Graham’s wine since October last year
- Monthly wine sales topped $1 million for the first time
- Moved into historic Te Kauwhata winery with a team of 8, bottling up to 12,000 bottles a day
- Launched Australian distribution deal covering 1200 BWS outlets nationwide
- Currently running nationwide TV campaign in Australia
While Lion will handle New Zealand distribution, Invivo will retain complete control of marketing and product development in New Zealand.