We got a friendly newsletter from Pepia Est, a popular wholesaler with warehouses in Eagle. The company just doubled its warehouse space. “We are excited to announce,” the newsletter says,” that we are officially the first green wholesaler on Aruba, and we hope to lead the way to a greener more environmentally conscious future. Join us in celebrating October Green Month, by making ‘green’ daily changes and ensure a more sustainable future for our Happy Island.” The newspaper goes on to say: “Not only do we sell the best organic products; we are also doing our best in keeping our environmental footprint low in other areas. We have recently installed solar panels to our rooftops as well as implemented a paperless invoice system and we changed all our lights to LED. Now it’s your turn.”
Pepia Est reports that they conduct trainings for bar staff in the field of Organic Cocktails and will be happy to teach the art of green cocktails to any bartender who signs up. The company also carries a number organic wine labels, DeLoach Winery, Russian River Valley, California, Domaine Carneros, Napa Valley, California, and Del Maguey Mezcal, Oaxaca, Mexico.
Partners Michael v/d Berg and Herdy ten Lohuis, smart and hard working business people, are often seen in their company’s yard unloading just-arrived containers, as sweaty as the rest of their crew. They are also known for their generous Friday Happy Hours, often starting as early as mid-afternoon, where they invite industry partners to taste their latest arrivals, wines and spirits, long into the evening. I think I should stop by, this week.
A short interview with Michael v/d Berg:
How long have you been open? We first opened Pepia Est in 2003
How many brands do you carry? We carry around a 1,000 different products
What are the big ones, the BIG names?! Our big names are Absolut, Tito’s Vodka, Chivas Regal, Miller Beer, Malibu Rum, Fireball Cinnamon Whisky, and in wines Carlo Rossi, Yellow Tail Wines and Meiomi.
Check out the complete portfolio: https://issuu.com/michaelvandenberg61/docs/pepia_est_brand_portfolio_for_magaz
How do you acquire a BIG name? Normally brands come to us, in need of a refresh in their performance, seeking more market-share….most of the suppliers talk to each other and discuss alternatives, we tend to pop up in those conversations in a positive way, and then the ball starts rolling, don’t forget they come and visit the island, talk to our clients, and they always want to know who is doing what, and how well they are doing it.
What is the secret of your success? Always put customers first; never sell them what you want, but rather sell them what they need/want; add value not by raising prices, but add service and advice; come up with way they could perform better while using our products! Challenge existing MOs by being innovative. Most importantly hire smart people, embrace change, never give up, and above all be honest. In regard to Pepia Est’s suppliers, we are transparent, quick to react, and we maintain straight forward communications, always adhering to brand values and standards
What is the secret of a good partnership?? Herdy and I, while we are very different as people, we have one shared goal, the wellbeing of Pepia Est and its clients; we are a solid partnership in all aspects, and are blessed by all 5 marketing Ps:
People- we have great employees
Place – we own a superb, centrally located warehouse and offices
Promotion – we mix good, old-school marketing with edgy innovations
Price – our products carry a fair price tag, conforming to market conditions
Product – we have strong, hard core key products, mixed in with cool trendy ones, premium AND super premium products, with something for all market segments