On November 23, 2017, Juan Baeza and Sara Blanco visited Carlos III University – Madrid, and its International Business Administration Master’s students. They told us first-hand about the international growth and international strategy of J. García-Carrión.
J. García-Carrión was founded in 1890 in Jumilla, when José García-Carrión, the great-grandfather of the current president, opened up his first winery. From the very first moment, they had a clear international orientation and exported their wine to France. Currently, it is the number one Winery in Europe, the 5th in the World and the second juice brand in Europe.
The international strategy of J. García-Carrión
J.Garcia-Carrión and its innovative spirit
Although the company was founded in the late nineteenth century, it wasn’t until the 1980s when they launched one of their best-known products to this date: Don Simon wine. While it was a controversial decision, the key to success lay in complementing their excellent quality and concept with a novel format. Soon after, it became the best selling wine in Spain and then the best selling Spanish wine in the world.
In addition to their innovation in product design, a constant in this company has been the innovation of their processes. Thus, they have launched numerous initiatives to automate their plants. For example, its plant in Huelva has the capacity to process more than 2,000 tons of fruit per day, collected from their own orange trees or nearby farmers, squeezed and stored. The whole plant is automated and robotized allowing the optimization of its processes. This use of technology has allowed them to obtain international certifications from organizations such as the BRC (British retail consortium), where they have obtained the highest score over 3 consecutive years, and IFS (Industrial Food Standard), where they obtained the highest score the following two years, which certified their exemplary facilities.
The diversification of J. García Carrión.
After their success in wine production, Don Simón, they took advantage of the popularity of this brand to launch other products. This way, they broke into other sectors such as the production of juices, sangria and gazpacho. While many of these products were fully aimed at the domestic market, many others were created expressly to meet the needs of other markets.
The image of the great Don Simon brand was clearly strengthened and is currently among the top of the most chosen brands in Spain. This has made their brand continue to extend to other types of products such as its range of soy milk, smoothies and Veggies. These products are a future gamble for the company knowing the potential that these products present in their product line.
But J. García-Carrión is more than just Don Simón. This family business was acquiring its presence in different denominations of origin (Toro, Rueda, Ribera de Duero, Rioja, Mancha-Valdepeñas, Jumilla, Cava, Penedes and Catalonia) as well as building packaging plants, in different locations (Daimiel, Huelva, Jumilla, Segorbe, Almería). All this has allowed the company to be fully integrated vertically.
In the wine industry, specifically, within the García-Carrión emblem, they produce and sell numerous brands. Under the Pata Negra brand, they have become the first winery in Spain that combines 8 appellations of origin under the same brand. They have also managed to position their brand ‘Jaume Serra’ amongst a range of Cavas and their brand Don Luciano, amongst sparkling wine.
J. García-Carrión and his international presence
J.García-Carrión’s commercial activity extends to more than 155 countries across 5 continents. Currently, beyond their exports, they have offices in China, Germany, France, the United States and, and even consider establishing plants outside of Spain.
Among other countries, they have a strong presence in the United Kingdom distributing their products to distributors such as Tesco and Sainsbury’s. Due to the type of products they produce, they need to be constantly adapting to the markets in which they operate. Some of their brands, for example, have arisen from adapting to the tastes of others, which has not prevented them from subsequently introducing them into others where they have also achieved success. This was the case of their Don Luciano “pink” for the US and their Don Luciano “blue” in China. Both products have had an excellent reception in other markets, including Spain.
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