Rosemount keeps cork on prices despite high dollar

Rosemount will resist lifting prices for its flagship wine, Rosemount Diamond Label, despite currency pressures on its key export markets in North America and Europe.

Rosemount will resist lifting prices for its flagship wine, Rosemount Diamond Label, despite currency pressures on its key export markets in North America and Europe.

The winemaker will instead rely on fresh marketing initiatives including a new sponsorship deal with the AFL and on-premise promotions to dominate its category.

Angus McPherson managing director of Rosemount, which is owned by the world's biggest pure-play wine company Treasury Wine Estates, said Diamond Label was priced at $10 to $15 a bottle and that fitted perfectly with its strategy.

"TWE wants to win in what we call 'masstige' [prestige for the masses] and luxury wines and Rosemount Diamond Label is core in masstige."

TWE boss David Dearie has pushed through a masstige strategy since the company was split off from Foster's two years ago, focusing on quality wines that are more expensive than mass market wines but also more luxurious.

For some of TWE's portfolio, this has seen a lift in prices or an exit from unprofitable markets.

The world's second-largest alcoholic-beverage company, Pernod Ricard, plans to lift prices for its Australian flagship label Jacob's Creek in the US after a similar price hike in Britain.

"I don't think we are raising our prices," Mr McPherson said, "because I think we are in a really good price point where consumers are willing to pay for brands.

"It's above that $10 per bottle segment so I think Rosemount is in a really good position where we are producing world class wines."

Robert Parker, founder of the influential publication Wine Advocate, recently gave 28 TWE wines a score of 90 points or above, of which four were Rosemount.

Mr McPherson declined to comment if a decision to keep Rosemount prices stable in North America despite the cost pressures of the high dollar was hurting margins.

"Rosemount Diamond Label still sits between the $US8 and $US10 price point in America, it always has, and what we do is make sure we maintain the quality in the bottle."

It certainly isn't hurting sales as Rosemount volumes in the US rose 9.1 per cent for the first half of 2012-13.

Mr McPherson said Rosemount would focus on communicating its brand strategy to consumers, and getting the wine in the hands of its drinkers through a range of new marketing platforms.

He said a deal first inked in 2012 for Rosemount to be the AFL's official wine partner has been renewed.