Peter Click Debuts New Import Company, Golden Frog ProductionsDecember 21, 2016
Industry veterans Peter Click and Alan MacDonald have opened a new importing company, Golden Frog Productions.Their first offering is Awning Estate Cabernet Sauvignon ($17) from the Apalta region in Chile’s Colchagua Valley. Currently in 15 states, Awning is expected to reach national distribution next year, and Click and MacDonald are targeting 50,000 cases within three to five years. “There are no fine wines from Chile’s Apalta region that retail for under $20,” says Click. “Because of our model, where we’ve taken out a lot of the fat on the importer level, Awning can retail for under $20.”
Golden Frog plans to launch one or two new imported wines a year, each under a different brand, and is currently scouting producers in Spain, France and Argentina. The idea is to focus on a single SKU for each brand, creating accessible propositions for U.S. consumers in terms of branding and packaging. Awning Estate, produced in partnership with Chile’s Viña Ventisquero, is currently concentrated on the East Coast, but will continue to expand westward, focusing first on key markets.
Click and MacDonald intend to run a lean company with slimmer margins than most importers—and thereby reduce bottle prices by as much as 30% on the shelf. “A traditional importer may take a margin of 45%, but ours are under 10%,” says MacDonald. “We’re able to do that because we’re a small operation.”
Peter Click sold his Click Wine Group—known for brands like Fat Bastard, Root: 1 and Clean Slate—to The Winebow Group in 2008. MacDonald has served with both Click Wine Group and Winebow, as well as Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, across a two-decade career in the industry. —Kimberly Tharel