Interviews, insight & analysis on Ecommerce

How We Built it: Marina Ayton and Amy Gatehouse of Pink Diesel

ECA talks to the founders of the female-friendly rosé brand.

Give us the elevator pitch. Tell us about your brand in 100 words or less.

Pink Diesel is a sustainably harvested, female-founded rosé wine brand with a kick-ass personality to match it. We exist to shake up the current Provençal rosé offering with our unorthodox attitude to the wine industry. Our goal; to make wine – guided by nature. Despite calling ourselves Pink Diesel, there is no inherent contradiction. Good, green and eco-friendly are all at the heart of our brand and we are very conscious of that. Grapes are hand-picked across the Bandol, Le Beausset and other Provence communes to ensure every bottle has the right character and finesse. The name Pink Diesel encapsulates how wine makes you feel – hence our slogan #fuelgoodtimes. It’s about creating memories, kicking back with family or friends or by yourself with a book and a good glass of wine. How do you #fuelgoodtimes?

What inspired you to set up your company?

We were frustrated with the established Provence rosé houses who kept increasing their price points year on year, yet the quality of the wine was diminishing. This did not add up to us and after looking into the industry we discovered brands were cutting corners in production to keep up with the capacity at which they were selling and the demand. This included bleaching their wines to gain that ‘pale’ hue… We also felt pink wine had a stereotype attached to it, and one that portrayed women drinking it in unfair or unflattering ways. So we set out on a mission to create a vibrant brand, allowing women to drink freely when and where they wanted and with a wine that did not compromise on quality or price!

What was your biggest challenge in year one?

As YES women our biggest challenge was saying NO! When starting up your own business it’s hard not to try and seize every opportunity placed in front of you. Looking back, we might have been more careful about where we spent our time and, more importantly, money. We were both working full-time jobs for the first year so it was hard to know when to take a break or take time off! But it’s important to factor rest in, otherwise you are no good to one another or the brand you are building!

What would you say has been your biggest marketing success?

Definitely our events. We hosted a 3-week pop-up bar in the centre of London’s Covent Garden Piazza last summer. It was the ultimate rosé bar dream! Not only did we have the footfall, but local businesses made us their ‘go-to’ spot for after-work drinks, tourists from all over the world stopped by asking where they could purchase the wine and we had thousands of unique visitors actually interact with our brand and us in person! The response to the wine and our atmosphere was amazing. We’ve also got to thank the sun gods for the weather for our success!

What has been the biggest mistake you made?

We over-ordered too much stock last year and as a result headed into the new year with a lot of our cash tied up in product sitting in a warehouse! It only made us get even more creative as to how and where we could sell the wine, without discounting it massively or brand damaging. Luckily we’ve found some amazing partnerships off the back of this and have been able to supply our first overseas bar in The Alps with Pink Diesel!

Tell us about your plans for the future

The wine industry is on the verge of a dramatic transformation and we want to continue to contribute to the modern building blocks of this! With our female-friendly voice, and championing a small, family-run producer in the South of France, we want to encourage consumers to opt for brands that are really taking care of their supply chain and investing in independent businesses. We are already on our way to becoming B-Corp certified and sustainability will be a huge factor of our growth and decision-making. You can expect a few new products too!…what this space as we continue to #fuelgoodtimes!

How we Built it

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