Vintage Wine Estates Names Ryan Watson as Chief Marketing Officer

Selected to lead consumer-centric growth agenda and foster data-driven culture to define market opportunities, optimize portfolio strategy and strengthen brand desirability in-service of a virtuous marketing cycle

Vintage Wine Estates, Inc. (Nasdaq: VWE and VWEWW) (“VWE” or the “Company”), one of the top wine producers in the U.S., today announced the appointment of Ryan Watson as Chief Marketing Officer (“CMO”). Mr. Watson joins VWE with nearly 20 years’ experience in global, data-driven, consumer-oriented marketing and transformational strategies in both B2B and B2C verticals across a variety of industries. He will begin his duties on January 16, 2024.

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(Photo: Business Wire)

(Photo: Business Wire)

As VWE’s CMO, Mr. Watson will lead the effort to drive consumer- and demand-centric thinking across the enterprise with responsibilities for insights, data & analytics, brands, innovation and portfolio management, DTC and digital strategy as well as design, public relations and communications.

Seth Kaufman, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are thrilled to welcome Ryan to our executive team to lead our efforts in creating a consumer-focused enterprise that can deliver sustainable growth. We expect him to be a significant contributor as we measurably simplify the business and our business model. Ryan’s significant knowledge in data driven analysis will help to develop capability within the business for deeper understanding of market dynamics, consumer behavior and emerging trends. We believe this will prove valuable as we craft a consumer-centric portfolio strategy grounded in relevant and desirable brands that create a virtuous cycle across physical retail, on-premise, eBusiness and on-site visitation to optimize the cost and impact of customer acquisition. We are making progress with our Five-Point Plan as we look to reduce costs and monetize assets to pay down debt, while concurrently developing a robust strategy that reimagines the future for VWE to create long-term shareholder value.”

Mr. Watson joins VWE from Boston Consulting Group (“BCG”) where he was a Partner focused on digital, growth and marketing topics in a range of consumer industries. A core area of focus was the commercialization of an integrated marketing measurement and activation offering leveraging advanced analytics and AI. Prior to BCG, Mr. Watson had a unique career path spanning Amazon, Kraft Heinz, Tesco, and two high-growth consumer companies. During his rapid ascent in challenging and increasingly senior roles, Mr. Watson established a track record of delivering growth, increasing market share, and driving profitability while building high-performing, customer-centric organizations. Mr. Watson began his career at Goldman Sachs & Co., where he advanced from Analyst to Vice President, and subsequently first joined BCG earlier in his career. He earned his B.A. in Economics at Princeton University and is a CFA charterholder.

About Vintage Wine Estates, Inc.

Vintage Wine Estates (Nasdaq: VWE and VWEWW) is a family of wineries and wines whose singular focus is producing the best quality wines and incredible customer experiences with wineries throughout Napa, Sonoma, California’s Central Coast, Oregon, and Washington State. Since its founding 20 years ago, the Company has grown to be the 14th largest wine producer in the U.S., selling more than 2.2 million nine-liter equivalent cases annually. With approximately 40 brands, key focus brands include ACE Cider, Bar Dog, B.R. Cohn, Cameron Hughes, Cherry Pie, Firesteed, and Kunde, many of which have achieved critical acclaim. To consistently drive growth, the Company curates, creates, stewards, and markets its many brands and services to customers and end consumers via a balanced omni-channel strategy encompassing direct-to-consumer, wholesale, and private label and custom wine making services. While VWE is diverse across price points and varietals with brands ranging from $10 to $150 USD at retail, its primary focus is on the fastest growing luxury segment of the U.S. wine industry with the majority of brands selling in the range of $10 to $20 per bottle. The Company regularly posts updates and additional information at

Forward-Looking Statements

Some of the statements contained in this press release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws (collectively, “forward-looking statements”). Forward-looking statements are all statements other than those of historical fact, and generally may be identified by the use of words such as “believe”, “expect”, “making”, “developing”, “will” or other similar expressions that indicate future events or trends. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding VWE’s Five Point Plan and business strategies; VWE’s strategies related to hiring; the timing of Ryan Watson’s start with the Company; the ability of Mr. Watson to execute on leading consumer- and demand-centric thinking across the enterprise including through insights, data & analytics, brands, innovation and portfolio management, DTC and digital strategy as well as design, public relations and communications; the ability of Mr. Watson to help simplify the business and our business model; the value of Mr. Watson’s services, and the expected results and performance of Mr. Watson with the Company. These statements are based on various assumptions, whether or not identified in this news release, and on the current expectations of VWE’s management. These forward-looking statements are not intended to serve as, and should not be relied on by any investor as, a guarantee of actual performance or an assurance or definitive statement of fact or probability. Actual events and circumstances are difficult or impossible to predict and may differ materially from those contained in or implied by such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of VWE. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements include, among others: risk that Mr. Watson does not perform in his role as CMO as expected; the Company’s ability to recognize benefits from any organization restructuring and other cost savings actions, including expected results from the implementation of the Company’s Five-Point Plan, positive cash generation and asset monetization; the Company’s ability to regain compliance with the Nasdaq Listing Standards and maintain the listing of its securities on Nasdaq; risks related to ongoing legal proceedings; the Company’s limited experience operating as a public company and its ability to remediate its material weaknesses in internal control over financial reporting and to maintain effective internal control over financial reporting; the ability of the Company to retain key personnel; the effect of economic conditions on the industries and markets in which VWE operates, including financial market conditions, rising inflation, fluctuations in prices, interest rates and market demand; the effects of competition on VWE’s future business; the potential adverse effects of health pandemics, epidemics or contagious diseases on VWE’s business and the U.S. and world economy; declines or unanticipated changes in consumer demand for VWE’s products; disruption of supply or shortage of energy; VWE’s ability to adequately source grapes and other raw materials and any increase in the cost of such materials; the impact of environmental catastrophe, natural disasters, disease, pests, weather conditions and inadequate water supply on VWE’s business; VWE’s level of insurance against catastrophic events and losses; impacts from climate change and related government regulations; VWE’s significant reliance on its distribution channels, including independent distributors, particularly in its wholesale operations; a loss or significant decline of sales to important distributes, marketing companies, or retailers; risks associated with new lines of business or products; potential reputational harm to VWE’s brands from internal and external sources; decline in consumer sentiment to purchase wine through VWE’s Direct-to-Consumer channels; possible decreases in VWE’s wine quality ratings; integration risks associated with recent or future acquisitions; possible litigation relating to misuse or abuse of alcohol; changes in applicable laws and regulations and the significant expense to VWE of operating in a highly regulated industry; VWE’s ability to maintain necessary licenses; VWE’s ability to protect its trademarks and other intellectual property rights; risks associated with the Company’s information technology and ability to maintain and protect personal information; VWE’s ability to make payments on its indebtedness; risks that the Company is unable to meet the additional restrictions and obligations imposed by its amended credit agreement; and those factors discussed in the Company’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and in subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q or other reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. There may be additional risks including other adjustments that VWE does not presently know or that VWE currently believes are immaterial that could also cause actual results to differ from those expressed in or implied by these forward-looking statements. In addition, forward-looking statements reflect VWE’s expectations, plans or forecasts of future events and views as of the date and time of this news release. VWE undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained herein, except as may be required by law. Accordingly, undue reliance should not be placed upon these forward-looking statements.


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