NEFT Vodka® USA, Inc., Substantially Increasing Its Presence Across The Globe While Strengthening Senior-level Management Team During 2020
EL SEGUNDO, Calif., Jan. 12, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- NEFT Vodka, the award-winning, ultra-premium vodka widely known for winning Best Vodka at the SF World Spirits Competition and a flavor so smooth you’ll want to sip it neat, today disclosed its tremendous success throughout 2020. The announcement comes on the heels of triple-digit growth for the year.
During 2020 and despite the restrictions due to COVID-19, NEFT partnered with several new and existing distributors, successfully entering six new states including Florida, Louisiana, Nevada, Montana, Wyoming and South Carolina. These add to its existing presence in California, Texas, New York, New Jersey and Utah. In addition, NEFT is active in at least sixteen international markets including Germany, Austria, Russia, Italy, Australia, Spain, Ukraine, Iceland, Norway and the UK, among several others.
NEFT also significantly strengthened its senior management team through permanent hires and advisory partnerships. Collectively, these new additions to the NEFT team add over 150 years of deep industry experience to the already deep expertise of NEFT’s executive staff.
Tom Wilen, Global Strategic Advisor – Mr. Wilen has over forty years’ experience in the global spirits market including roles as President of Allied Domecq North America, the largest division of publicly traded Allied Domecq PLC., and as Chief Operating Officer for Jim Beam Brands Worldwide, Inc. While at Jim Beam, Mr. Wilen managed $1.3 billion in sales with 2,200 employees in 180 countries. In addition, Wilen initiated a joint venture with Highland Distillers and Remy Cointreau to create the multi-billion-dollar global distribution network, Maxxium, Inc., with 2,000 employees in 60 countries. Among Wilen’s many former clients are Aviation Gin, TyKu Sake and Leblon Cachaca. TyKu Sake was recently sold to Diageo for $620 million while Leblon Cachaca was sold for an undisclosed amount. Wilen will be responsible for the ongoing establishment and growth NEFT’s global presence and will report to NEFT’s President, Dan Kleeberg.
Robert Sylvia, Vice President of Sales, Western Division – Mr. Sylvia brings to NEFT over four decades of experience in spirits sales and hospitality, with deep expertise in developing relationships with large chains such as Albertsons, Ralphs and CVS. He comes to NEFT having spent 13 years as the Division Manager for South Orange County at Pacific Wine & Spirits/Southern Glazers Wine & Spirits.
Adam Opalek, Vice President of Business Development – Mr. Opalek has over 20 years’ experience in the spirits industry ranging from neighborhood bars and restaurants to distillery startups. He was one of the first employees involved with High West Distillery and was integral in taking the company from a startup to a category leader, culminating with his position of Western States Sales Manager, until High West was acquired by Constellation Brands in 2016. Prior to joining the company in a full-time capacity, Adam was a member NEFT’s Board of Directors.
Kieran Walsh, Senior Advisor Sales and Marketing – Mr. Walsh is a Brand and Market Strategist in the beverage industry who was also part of the founding team at High West Distillery, running sales and marketing in the central the U.S region until its sale in 2016. Additional positions include Vice President roles at Laws Whiskey House and PorchJam Distillery. After more than 20 years’ in-house experience, Walsh now advises CEOs, executives, and entrepreneurs on how to grow their brands, concepts, and investments into nine-figure exits.
Kevin Alfaro, Chief Financial Officer – Mr. Alfaro joins NEFT with nearly 30 years’ experience as a CPA, primarily within the wine industry. Throughout his career, Alfaro has managed accounting and finance departments, loan restructurings, land acquisitions, permit violation settlements, negotiations, compliance and acquisitions. Alfaro was also the lead officer on all aspects of the $315 million acquisition of Meiomi.
“2020 was a spectacular year for NEFT, despite the obstacles created by the pandemic,” said Dan Kleeberg, President of NEFT Vodka. “Our team’s success in signing new distributors and entering new states, achieving exponential growth and attracting true industry talent to the organization during such a challenging period is reflective of the incredible strength of the NEFT brand. As we enter 2021, we believe we will see continued expansion and growth within the U.S and beyond, and will continue to grow our investment in sales, marketing and inventory to meet the escalating demand for what we believe is the best tasting vodka in the world.”
NEFT Vodka is currently available in the aforementioned states and countries and is also available online through various outlets including Mission Wine and Spirits, Reserve Bar, Bounty Hunter, Drizly, Hi-Time Wine Cellars, K&L Wine Merchants, Bitters and Bottles and Remedy Liquor. Please see neftvodkaus for online purchasing options or visit shopneftvodka.
ABOUT NEFT VODKA USA INC.
Crafted in the Rhaetian Alps of Austria for its oxygen-rich spring water, NEFT combines 4 different types of non-GMO ancient rye grains, and uses a triple, copper-pot distillation process with carbon-layer filtering to produce a vodka with a refined flavor profile and a natural, slightly sweet finish. Since debuting in the U.S., NEFT has received multiple accolades and awards including: a 98-point rating from The Tasting Panel magazine; winning Double Gold medals at the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Competition, becoming one of only three vodkas to win that recognition consecutively over the past two years (2018, 2019); and significantly, in the same Competition, won “Best Vodka” in 2018. For additional information visit www.neftvodkaus.com.
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SOURCE NEFT Vodka, USA