Kobe, Japan -- Hakutsuru Saké Brewery Co., Ltd. announced today that SakéOne Corporation of Forest Grove, Oregon has been appointed the exclusive importer for all its saké and related products in the United States. SakéOne's role as Hakutsuru importer will commence on July 1, 2014.
President Kenji Kano said, "Hakutsuru developed a strategic alliance with SakéOne in 2010 when it acquired a significant equity interest in the Oregon-based saké company. SakéOne has demonstrated a strong leadership position in the premium U.S. saké market, and affords Hakutsuru a new saké ‘category specific’ sales approach moving forward."
The Kobe, Japan based company is the world’s largest saké brewer and is America’s top selling imported saké. Founded in 1743, Hakutsuru is also Japan’s top selling saké and is exported to 45 countries.
Steve Vuylsteke, President and CEO for SakéOne stated, “The addition of Hakutsuru to our growing portfolio of Oregon craft saké and fine imported Japanese saké begins an exciting new chapter for SakéOne. In business since 1743, they produce outstanding quality products at unmatched value in the saké category and we look forward to expanding their presence and leadership position in the premium U.S. saké market.”
The premium saké category in the US market has been growing at 2.5 times the rate of the value saké segment. (Premium saké defined as 750ml equivalent bottles selling for $10 retail or greater.) When combined, the saké portfolios of Hakutsuru and SakéOne currently hold 50% of the premium saké market share of U.S. Grocery chains (Nielsen 52 week, September 14, 2013).
Hakutsuru President Kano stated, “Hakutsuru reached a mutual agreement with our former agent Dreyfus Ashby to move the U.S. distribution to a new importer. “I would like to thank the Dreyfus Ashby Company for the long-standing relationship and sales efforts in the United States. We look forward to the next chapter of our evolution with the team at SakéOne.”
Hakutsuru was founded in 1743 and has been managed continuously by the Kano family for 271 years. Based in the renowned saké-brewing region of Nada (in the Hyogo prefecture), Hakutsuru is Japan’s largest saké brewer and the global leader in saké production. It also operates the Hakutsuru Fine Art Museum (opened in 1934 in Kobe) and the Hakutsuru Saké Brewery Museum (opened in 1982). The company champions saké and its role in Japan’s culture through its slogan “To friendship, for all time.” For more information, visit Hakutsuru’s website at hakutsuru-saké.com.
SakéOne is America’s first craft saké producer and compliments its own fine products with a growing portfolio of fine Japanese saké imports. Its Oregon craft saké brands Momokawa, Moonstone, and g Saké are joined by import brands Murai Family, Yoshinogawa, Kasumi Tsuru, SakéMoto, and Tombo. A leader committed to saké education at the wholesale, retail and consumer levels, SakéOne is focused on expanding the enjoyment of premium saké in the United States. For more information, visit SakéOne’s website at sakeone.com.
For media information, interviews and images in the United States, please contact Kimberly Charles of Charles Communications Associates at email@example.com or 415|701-9463. For Hakutsuru related questions, please contact Katsuhiko Murakami at 310|381-0005.
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