Andy Consuegra’s World Equity Brand Builders (WEBB) continues to expand.
Miami’s WEBB and Winston Salem’s Banks Channel have announced plans to merge their respective companies, with a mission to aggressively expand their spirits and wines distribution and marketing activities throughout the Caribbean, North Atlantic Islands and Central America. This merger of equals will be effective January 1, 2017. The new company will be known as WEBB Banks and will be based in Miami with an additional office in Winston Salem, NC.
At present, the two companies collectively sell more than 350 thousand cases of 40 plus brands in the Atlantic Basin. The merger, designed to ramp up distribution and sales by consolidating respective company resources and personnel, firmly positions WEBB Banks as a key player in the region.
The merger does not impact WEBB’s JV with Edrington (EWTRA) for the Duty Free Channel in the Americas, for which Consuegra will continue to serve as CEO. The merger also does not affect Banks Channel’s wine importation business in North Carolina, which Bowman will continue to own and operate.
Founded in 1982, Banks Channel is owned and managed by Robert Bowman. Banks Channel already has a dominant position as a premium wine distributor, managing such iconic brands as Beringer, Penfolds, Caymus, Shafer, Freixenet, Rodney Strong, Ramey, Noble Vines, Smoking Loon, Graham’s Port and many others.
WEBB, founded in 2007 by Andy Consuegra, distributes both premium wine and spirits, including The Macallan, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Disaronno, Svedka, Brugal Rum, Cupcake Vineyards, Luc Belaire, Molly’s, Mionetto and Frescobaldi wines.
Bowman will serve as Managing Director of WEBB Banks, while Partner Andy Consuegra serves in a supporting role with a focus on supplier relations. The Managing Director position will rotate periodically between Bowman and Consuegra. The WEBB Banks Board will be Bowman, Consuegra and industry veteran Michel Recalt, who will be charged with strategic consulting. Phillip Jarrell will be responsible for distributor strategy and marketing, while also directing and expanding the embedded portfolio management team. In addition, six area managers will each assume four to five markets, reporting directly to Managing Director Robert Bowman.
Andy Consuegra noted, “WEBB and Banks Channel have structured the merger to drive superior distribution and sales through increased scale and focus. By combining our teams, we enhance our deep insights of the traveling consumer and collectively leverage our respective relationships and specific market knowledge.”
Consuegra added, “I have admired Bank’s success over the years and have great respect for Robert’s integrity and strong relationships. The cultures of our respective companies have always displayed a strong synergy, which will make the newly merged company a truly focused and formidable organization in the region.”
Robert Bowman stated, “I am excited about the potential of this merger. Our increased scale will permit us to spend more time with our customers, assisting their efforts to drive even greater distribution and sales for our entire portfolio. I also believe that WEBB and Banks Channel independently have created similar business models, which is one of many reasons this merger makes great sense.”
WORLD EQUITY BRAND BUILDERS (WEBB)is a spirits and wine marketing and distribution company based in Miami, FL, with embedded portfolio specialists in five markets. WEBB specializes in cost-efficient strategic partnerships to the marketing and distribution of leading brands, leveraging its insights and established relationships in the Caribbean and Central America.
Founded in 2007 by Andy Consuegra, a 23 year veteran of the spirits and wines industry, WEBB employs a team of seasoned multinational industry experts with a proven track record of building brands in the Americas.
BANKS CHANNEL, founded in 1982,is a progressive, energetic organization that passionately believes true success is based on a thorough understanding of all the brands it represents; knowing its markets better than anyone else; and excelling at developing key partnerships with both suppliers and customers.
Banks Channel was originally an operating division of a North Carolina wine and beer distribution company. That background in distribution is a key ingredient in Banks Channel’s success with all its distributor customers.
Robert Bowman joined Banks Channel in 1999, became an owner in 2001, and has been the sole owner of Banks Channel since 2008.