Alcohol distributors – Beauty or Beast
by: William W. Coplin
There s a new wrinkle in the distributor world, offering lower cost and nationwide distribution –“ Masilva” (libdib.com). Most states, including Nevada, use a 3 tier distribution system – producer to distributor to retailer with a cost/profit grease at each level to for the skids.
For small producers like we have in Nevada distributors present several problems:
1) A producer has to have a distributor,
2) distributors provide a marketing service – they exercise judgment about whether to carry your brand,
3) they add a layer of cost, up to 30% or even a flat fee.
Nonetheless, one ought to obey the law and we do need delivery and shelf stocking. Masilva may be a solution – No striving to get a distributor to take your line; Fixed cost but!!! You probably have to do the marketing and arrange shelf space. If you as producer are established with a retailer these are probably not big issues. To begin Masilva just gets you legal and fixes your cost. Still better that having to solicit distributors.As an alternative there are small distributors in Nevada that will take your line but you should be prepared to do the marketing to find the retailers and to do some delivery/stocking. Masilva’s goal is to operate in all 50 states but. For now, is only in CA and NY.