New York – Spirits Consulting Group (“SCG”), a leading firm that specializes in brand development for the liquor industry, announced today the acquisition of Midnight Solutions Management, a spirits sales strategy and marketing agency.
Midnight Solutions owner Shu de Jong will remain an integral part of the team and will serve as Managing Director of SCG. De Jong will head up national sales and major account management for SCG while SCG Founder Susan Mooney will remain CEO and director of branding, product development and the strategic planning service modules.
“Shu’s long-standing relationships and ability to meaningfully expand our brand representation and sales services nationally is a major asset to increase the breadth of services for new and existing clients,” said Mooney.
“After much discussion, Susan and I determined that our companies’ skill sets are aligned to provide the counsel necessary to successfully launch and incubate new brands in this competitive industry,” said de Jong.
De Jong has had notable successes in the spirits business for over 20 years. In 2002, he co-founded Panache Imports, which became the importer on record and partner of 42 Below Vodka in North America. He was responsible for building the brand’s image, identity and sales nationally while guiding it to a very lucrative acquisition in 2007 by Bacardi USA.
Shu then created and launched his second company called Panache Beverages, which owned, sold and marketed Wodka Vodka, Alchemia Vodka and Alibi American Whiskey. Following his time with Panache Beverages, de Jong redirected his skills and experience to counsel spirit entrepreneurs to build their brands through Midnight Solutions Management.
“I kept hearing that SCG was the place to go to incubate your brand. When I met Susan, we discovered we had similar relationships, our approach to the business was aligned we have complementary skills, so it was pretty much a no-brainer for me”. Says de Jong.
SCG was founded by Mooney in 2010 after identifying a hole in the market for a one- stop-shop that provides solutions for successfully launching new spirits brands. She
found that brands were introduced either by behemoths who lacked the structure, culture or team necessary for innovative new brands or brands that were started by independent entrepreneurs with little experience growing companies effectively or managing teams in the federally mandated 3-tier system for alcohol companies.
Furthermore, smaller brands wasted time and resources working with multiple agencies that often produced disjointed results at just the moment a brand needed to be laser focused and consistent. Tight, integrated teams and sales and marketing efforts are a hallmark of SCG’s approach.
“We are passionate about innovative brands – either in their approach or their product- we roll up our sleeves to get their sales going, their marketing sharp and to place the brands on the map in an cluttered and competitive industry. This acquisition gives SCG a significant advantage and provides a stronghold on advisory and consultancy both on a national and international level. SCG will to continue to seek relevant brands, find interesting new brands and to continue to expand,” said Mooney.
About Spirits Consulting Group:
Spirits Consulting group is a team of industry professionals who specialize in planning, developing and launching innovative wine and spirit brands. Led by CEO Susan Mooney, the SCG team has assisted both existing and new brands launch or expand in the U.S. market. Spirits Consulting Group is based in New York. www.spiritsconsulting.com