We received the visit of the wine company Bodegas Pinuaga, as part of the seminars organized by MaDI and the Institute of Business Initiatives and Family Business “Conde de Campomanes”. Its director, Esther Pinuaga, told us about the need for exports in order to grow, and about how they carried out their internationalization process.

Bodegas Pinuaga is a family-owned winery located in Toledo, with an approximate production of 150,000 bottles per year, mainly specialized in certified organic wine. They focus on offering mid to highrange wines to the domestic and international markets. They knew that they needed exports, because wine consumption in Spain is low, compared to other traditional countries such as France and Italy. For that reason, they exported for the first time in 2006 and they currently sell their products to the US, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Japan, South Korea, among others.

Interview

My name is Esther Pinuaga, I’m the owner of Bodegas Pinuaga, a family-owned winery located in Toledo.

Well, in our opinion exports and internationalization have been key for our business, as there was not enough wine demand and consumption in our country, Spain, and we were certain that the solution was to export for structural and capacity reasons. We currently export to 15 different countries, including some belonging to the EU and also the US, Canada, Brazil and Mexico in the American continent, as well as South Korea and Japan in Asia.

As a recommendation, I would say that… firstly students need to bear in mind that exporting today is not only a need, but also it really has to be part of your company’s structure; exporting doesn’t mean having one random client, it means that clients need to come back and consolidate. Secondly, in my opinion it is not so difficult, there are 5 pillars: One is getting ready, researching the market, defining the client; then you have to plan how you are going to enter each country; also, you need to have the right staff, people who are able to understand and to travel, to study your clients; you need to have the right budget and a lot of patience.

I think exports are important for an international trade student in the sense that currently any Spanish company that is losing money will eventually have to export, for structural reasons as I mentioned, and this is likely to generate lots of jobs.

I would like to say hello to MaDI students, and to ask them to drink wine more often, please!