The final phase of restructuring at Percy Fox is under way, designed to make the UDV wine business a major player in the take home market. The division's expertise has been in the on-trade and independents, but with the success of its Blossom Hill Californian range and the addition of the Piat D'Or wines, the off-trade is becoming a priority. The division has been expanded and the sales team has been reorganised. Blossom Hill has become a major player in the branded wine market. Agency director Simon Lawson said in the last 12 months sales had grown by 68%. At the end of last year the brand was selling 500,000 cases, without any multiple listings and with advertising support. Now it is stocked by some of the major grocers and the rate of sale has continued to climb. Lawson said: "The demand for it has come from consumers instore and they have been asking for it." This is the culmination of a long-term strategy which began in 1992 when Percy Fox introduced the wines and adopted a slow burn approach. Now the pace is set to quicken. "Blossom Hill and Piat give us the bridgehead to expand the sales opportunity into the multiple sector, where we have not been focused in the past." Building a bigger team will mean the operation will be able to continue to provide the level of service to the independents and the on-trade. "We have always prided ourselves on being fast and responsive. This is fundamental to the operation. We want to keep the decision making as close to the market as possible." The company is continuing to develop its range. It is currently working with Australian producer Rosemount to reintroduce the Ryecroft brand. This would give Percy Fox a mid priced (£5­7) range of New World varietals. {{DRINKS }}

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