Thirstie Expands Retail Partner Networks, Announces New Team Additions

NEW YORK – Thirstie, the leader in e-commerce and logistics solutions for alcohol brands, has announced the recent expansion of its list of retail partners to include top national merchants such as Fairway Market Wine and Spirits, Spec’s, Sherry-Lehmann and Morrell’s. These recognizable licensed retailers will fulfill orders placed through the Thirstie solution directly on liquor brands’ websites, and have already increased Thirstie’s geographic reach significantly. Along with this retail expansion, Thirstie has made several new additions to its executive team and advisory board that bring with them decades of experience and expertise in the industry.

Historically, liquor brands have been far removed from consumers because of strict federal and state rules and regulations. However, with e-commerce and online sales growth far outpacing that of brick-and-mortar stores, brands are working to create direct relationships with consumers and provide them with a superior user experience. By partnering with well-known retailers to deliver orders made via brands’ websites while remaining compliant with the three-tier system, Thirstie makes it possible for brands of any size – including Clos19 (LVMH), Drinkworks (AB InBev) and Maker’s Mark (Beam Suntory) – to launch their own e-commerce programs and reach relevant customers.

Retail partners are drawn to partnering with Thirstie because of the proven benefit to their business in the form of higher average order size than seen in third party marketplaces. The first half of 2019 saw a 437% growth in gross transaction spend compared to the first half of 2018. In June, Thirstie saw an average order size of $220, the highest average order size per month on company record. Throughout Thirstie’s history, order sizes have averaged $170, whereas other marketplaces typically see averages of $40 per order.

“From what we’ve seen, online shopping for anything from clothes to produce really is becoming the preferred method for the younger generation, and alcohol is no exception,” said Lisa Rydman, VP of Marketing, at Spec’s. “Our partnership with Thirstie has moved more bottles from our inventory and in turn I believe it has made more consumers aware that buying alcohol online is an easy-to-use, convenient option.”

The rapid growth of the Thirstie team – which has grown to 40 and is still expanding to meet the needs of liquor brands of all sizes – is another testament to the demand for accessible alcohol e-commerce and Thirstie’s ability to meet that demand. To fill this demand and expand Thirstie’s expertise, the following individuals have joined the executive team: Matthew Pflueger as CTO; Brian Gallegos as Head of Product; Kevin Gough as Vice President, Partnerships; and Oswald Calvario as Head of Finance.

“It was important to me that as our team grew overall, our roster of leadership grew in proportion to ensure we have as much industry experience as possible in key decision-making roles,” said Devaraj Southworth, CEO and Co-Founder of Thirstie. “We’ve seen significant growth in the liquor brands we serve and the order volume we’re processing, so we’re very excited to have these talented and experienced individuals on the team to help us deliver the best experience to both brands and consumers.”

In addition to the industry veterans that have joined the executive team, Thirstie has expanded its arsenal of experienced advisors. The Thirstie advisory board now includes established figures in the premium spirits industry, including Julious Grant, former Chief Commercial Officer of Beam Suntory; Chester Brandes, former CEO of Finlandia Vodka; Anshuman Vohra, Founder and former CEO of Bulldog Gin; and Robert Skene, former Board Member of the NY SLA and Partner at Buchman. This, in addition to retail stalwarts Don Kingsborough, former President of Westfield Retail Solutions; Robert Chatwani, former CMO of eBay; Arjun Arora, former General Partner, 500 Startups; Rob Soni, former General Partner at Bessemer and Matrix; and Nick Pahade, former CEO of Initiative Media.

“In my three decades in the industry, I’ve experienced firsthand how challenging staying fully compliant while keeping up with the latest technology and consumer demands can be,” said new advisory board member Julious Grant. “I believe what Thirstie has built is the holy grail in helping liquor brands keep up with modern consumers, and I’m looking forward to helping them accomplish their goals.”

For more information, please visit thirstie.com.

About Thirstie

Thirstie, the leading technology and logistics solution for alcohol brands, founded by Devaraj Southworth and Maxim Razmakhin, helps to power transactions through a robust API and expansive retail network. The Thirstie platform also provides brands with transparency into all data, consumer insights analytics and ROI to improve performance marketing. Thirstie has seen rapid growth since launching in 2014, boasting clients such as LVMH, Dom Perignon, Moët Hennessy, Clos19, Beam Suntory, Maker’s Mark, Anheuser-Busch InBev and Drinkworks. Headquartered in New York City, the e-commerce company opened a development center in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 2018. For more information about Thirstie, please visit thirstie.com.

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