Award-winning Grower Champagne specialist, championing the most exciting small-batch artisanal cuvées.
- Best Specialist Online Retailer – 2022 Drinks Business Awards
- Increased turnover by 219% over 12 months to year end 30/6/22*
- Unrivalled range of 60 producers and 230+ individual Champagnes
- Growing presence in leading restaurants, hotels & wine boutiques
Despite the immense size of the Champagne appellation – some 34,300 hectares spread over 5 departments and 319 villages – a clutch of big brands still dominate the market.These big brands account for 90% of the export market and perpetuate the belief that Champagne is a fizzy one-dimensional drink suitable for celebrations.
We believe this does an incredible disservice to the thousands of small-scale producers who work their own parcels of land, before harvesting, vinifying and bottling their own produce.
Our mission is to right this wrong by sourcing and selecting the finest new Grower Champagnes and bringing them to the UK market and beyond for the first time.
Since our incorporation in the depth of Covid, just two years ago, we have built the UK's largest Grower Champagne collection; small-batch, hand-crafted and hand-selected on merit, each bottle is unique. Collectively they offer a journey of discovery into the richly rewarding world of artisan Champagne, and it gives us enormous pride and satisfaction to share them with you.
Substantial accomplishments to date
In our first year of trading we worked hard to establish our B2C business. Features in publications such as the Independent and Financial Times gave us the impetus to build our database of loyal customers (which now stands almost 2,000), whilst our current Trustpilot score of 4.8 is testament to the work we have put in to maintain our client relationships.
With our B2C business well rooted, successful Black Friday and Christmas Campaigns in 2021 saw us achieve 100% increase in turnover* vs the previous quarter (Jul-Sep) allowing us to shift focus and expand our nascent B2B business.
*Turnover info from management accounts.
We finalised a new warehousing and logistics operation in Jan 22 and appointed a dedicated Sales and Brand Ambassador which enabled us to bring a range of our Champagnes to some of the UK’s leading restaurants, hotels and wine boutiques, with names such as Chiltern Firehouse, 5 Hertford Street and La Trompette now stocking our cuvées.
As our Champagnes gained recognition and exposure, we built on this with ongoing education, engagement and awareness through dedicated collaborations, PR outreach and hosted trade and consumer-facing events.
In June 22 we were hugely proud to be named ‘Specialist Online Retailer of the Year’ in the 2022 Drinks Business Awards.
Key figures from our first two years trading…
- Achieved turnover for Financial Year 2021 (FY21) of just under £125k, with continued growth as we entered FY22.
- FY22 Q2 tracked at +96% up on Q1 and a significant +240% over FY21 Q2
- Boosted turnover to almost £400k by end of FY22, (30th June 2022) – a sales growth of 219% over the preceding 12 months
A unique product offering, and specialist knowledge remain the tenants of our B2C model. Through our monthly subscription plans, curated exploration cases and consumer events we offer an unparalleled range of Champagnes and expertise to satisfy the most ardent Champagne enthusiast.
As our B2B business expands, we have begun working with a stock finance company to help us purchase in greater quantities, with the intention to drive down wholesale costs and sell at greater volume to our growing range of restaurants, hotels and wine boutiques.
Previous plans to build Sip beyond the UK have been on hold while we worked on a robust and reliable warehousing and logistics partner in France. With this now in place, we have a firm footing to provide cost-effective and timely shipping to other territories, first of which is the USA, for which we have begun conversations with a partner in place to act as a distributor/promotor. Once established here, we intend to take a similar approach in East Asia.
Building on the success of our early consumer tasting events, we intend to plan and execute more in-person experiences for both B2B and B2C clients, which have proven to be effective sales tools.
Use of proceeds
How we plan to use funds raised from this round:
Marketing – 30%
We are working with a PR consultant to position our brand in a range of ABC1 publications and websites. We aim to continue to build our domain authority through SEO optimised partnerships and drive traffic with PPC campaigns. As we pursue growth globally we also have to ensure our brand is positioned and promoted in new territories.
People – 21%
As we continue to expand our B2B business we will need an additional Sales person to help meet demand. We also have plans to appoint an administrative & content assistant to help handle the day-to-day and build on our Champagne authority.
Global Expansion – 20%
To further our growth into new territories we have taken the first steps to set up a French subsidiary of Sip Champagnes. In addition we need to spend time and resources finding the right partners to facilitate expansion in Asia.
Stock – 16%
Whilst we have a stock finance company in place to help us shoulder larger stock purchases we still need the ability to purchase some rolling lines quickly for instant sale.
Consumer branding exercises – 13%
Alongside marketing campaigns we have the intention to continue live tasting events for both consumers and wine professionals alike. As the momentum builds we would like to create a series of popup experiences in physical spaces to sell our Champagne.
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