The fourth-annual Beverage Alcohol Retailers Conference (BARC) took place on Sept. 15, with a full day of educational sessions designed for independent off-premise retailers, followed by an evening awards presentation honoring the Top 100 Retailers. This was the first virtual BARC, with all sessions streaming online.
The event kicked off with Content Director Jeremy Nedelka speaking live to David Jabour, president of Twin Liquors in Austin, who served as this year’s local host. Morning sessions continued with a keynote from Gary Fisch of Gary’s Wine & Marketplace in New Jersey, plus an industry data and trends overview from Marina Velez of the Beverage Information Group and Mike Provance of 3×3.
Following a presentation from retail expert Tom Shay on providing a memorable customer experience in challenging times, Daniel Warrilow from Campari Group spoke about consumer cocktail trends.
The afternoon sessions began with Robert Cavanaugh from Adventure Wine providing an overview of French wines from the Rhone Valley, as well as exploring the Spanish region of Carinana. The day’s streaming sessions concluded with a retail panel featuring Brandi Pollock from Fisher’s Liquor Barn in Colorado, TJ Douglas from Urban Grape in Boston and Mike Moreno from Moreno’s Liquors in Chicago.
Following a day of educational sessions, the evening highlighted the country’s best off-premise stores during the Top 100 Retailers awards presentation. The Top 100 are chosen by a judging panel of Beverage Dynamics staff, and represent every facet of the beverage industry. The 2020 Retailer of the Year, Twin Liquors, repeated their win from 2019 and will now enter the Top 100 Hall of Fame. For a full list of the Top 100 retailers, including rankings for the top ten, visit BeverageDynamics.com/top100.
Throughout the summer, BARC’s more than 300 attendees received early access to sessions through the Virtual Resources page. Topics included industry sales data, utilizing third-party marketers, private label and single barrel sales, overall industry trends and new legal and regulatory requirements.
BARC’s Virtual Trade Show also provides a networking opportunity for attendees and sponsors alike. Retailers can access exclusive demos and deals, set up meetings and correspond with leading industry vendors.
In the BARC Virtual Community, attendees can contact fellow retailers, share best practices and otherwise network with colleagues as they would during an in-person event.
BARC’s platinum sponsors for 2020 include 3×3, DOP Carinena, Campari Group and the Distilled Spirits Council. Other BRAC sponsors include Uber Eats, Hammeken Cellars, EZ-Drinks, Salt Wine Company, Somrus, Drizly, Tequila Comisario, Indigo Wine & Spirits and the NY International Spirits Competition.
BARC’s association partners include the CLBA (CO), KWSWA (KS), MLBA (MI), Adventure Wine, KABR (KY), TWSRA (TN), MMBA (MN), MLBA (MN), NABCA, KABR (KS), UBRA (AR) and TPSA (TX).
The virtual conference was presented with technology from event platform Bizzabo and video production company AVEX.
Date and location for the 2021 Beverage Alcohol Retailers Conference, tentatively scheduled for June 2021 in Austin, Texas will be announced soon. Visit bevretailersconference.com for more information.