Home Wine Business Editorial Three Tier Talk Top Five 2021 Predictions from Brian Rosen, BevStrat

Top Five 2021 Predictions from Brian Rosen, BevStrat


3 Tier TalkThere is no doubt, to anyone, that 2020 was challenging. 50% of the market was shut down 75% of the year. Our prediction newsletter, 7 years running, has been generally pretty spot on during that time. Let’s recap 2020. Mass layoffs at the distributor level. Brands shuttering. Bars and restaurants closing at key dining cities around the world. Brands slated to launch were sidelined while the costs of the creation of said brands were not “on the bench”. Financial pressure all around and yes, oh yes, a global pandemic. To not share the view that 2020 is best forgotten is both silliness and myopic thinking. But, with all that said, 2021 is here and this is what you can expect.

  • Return to normal by June
    • Two things will happen as summer welcomes the nation.
      • Warm weather will be national and thus outdoor season for on premise
      • A prediction that 65% of America will a) have a vaccine or b) throw Covid concern to the wind as the show must go in.
  • On Premise will return to leading brand adoption.
    • We are of the opinion that it is better to sell a bottle than a shot, but popular thinking says that brands are built on premise. Bars will be at nearly full strength by mid-year and thus the new and interesting brands will once again be vying for your liver space.
    • Wine lists, mixology programs will be very interesting and ever changing as the consumer will be more open and welcome to new drinks and concoctions. The consumer is tired of home mixology.
  • Third channel of sales is here to say.
    • We have on premise and off premise and now we have E premise. That is the app, home delivery, beverage ordering platforms that rose to prominence during the pandemic. Brands like Reserve Bar, Drizly, Thirsty and the like will continue to grow in use and adoption. They will also be an inexpensive way for brands to come to market.
  • A roaring 20’s return to Libations
    • The similarity of Spanish Flu and Covid are very aligned. Post Spanish Flu the nation celebrated for the next few years after the pandemic ended.
      • Mass consumption
      • Mass out of home dining/ drinking options emerged
      • Mass nondrinkers converted to drinkers.
    • At BevStrat we share the opinion that the consumer will celebrate their freedoms that they never appreciated prior.
      • Going out
      • Trying new brands
      • Starting new brands 
      • Supporting local independent retailers as they have proven to be the backbone of communities.
  • Beverage innovation will emerge and continue at record pace.
    • 2020 was the perfect storm of crap. Great beverage leaders were forced to sideline innovation and creativity for safety of the standardized brand. There will be a rash of new products coming to market in RTD, Whiskey, Tequila, Spiked Seltzer and many other options. Suppliers will feel safe again to create and bring to market new and interesting drinks across all categories.
    • The adult beverage market was always thought to be safe and secure from a growth perspective. After all, consumption and sales have gone up yearly since 1933. 2020 changes that. In 2021 we will emerge, and all will be right again with our industry.

The net of 2020 is as follows. It was challenging year and nearly brought the hospitality industry to its knees. We are nowhere close to solid footing but as 2021 begins we can, as an industry, feel good about the rebound, the opportunities that a new year brings and our game of selling wines, beers and spirits.

Happy Holidays, Happy New Year and Happy Selling!

Brian Rosen

Three Tier Talk

by Brian Rosen, www.BevStrat.com

Brian Rosen is Former CEO of America’s #1 Retailer, Sam’s Wines in Chicago, Former Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Retail and sought after retailer consultant.
EMail: [email protected]
Phone: 800-953-1312
Web: www.BevStrat.com

More information and articles by Brian Rosen

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